As a small business owner, you know one of the challenges facing you today is hiring and maintaining a quality staff. Retaining employees is even more important to small businesses, considering how much time, energy, and money goes into training them, and given the fewer resources a small business has compared to a larger company. One way to retain current employees and attract qualified hires is by offering benefits and perks. There are many affordable benefits and perks you can offer to your current and future employees. In this article, we will look at why small businesses should offer perks, what those perks can be, and we’ll look at employee benefits as well.
Productivity and Workforce Health: Why Should Employers Offer Employee Perks?
There are numerous reasons small businesses benefit from offering their employees perks. Perks encourage loyalty, which means fewer employee’s leaving the company for perceivably greener pastures. Perks also keep all your employee’s more engaged with their work and increases overall satisfaction with their job. Satisfied employees are more motivated and productive.
Employee Perks for Small Businesses
There are a variety of ways small businesses can approach employee perks. While small business might not have the same resources as a larger companies, they do have more room for flexibility and can offer unique perks and employee benefits that the more rigid larger business cannot. There are six main areas where employers can focus on giving perks and benefits. These are family, wellness, recognition, culture, talent development, and time off.
Employee Perks: Family Events
For most of your employees, their families are their top priority. Any support your business can offer them in their role as parents or caregivers shows them how much they are valued and seen. Parents with young or school-age children will likely be experiencing pressure around their time, and any perks you can offer that allow them more ease in their roles as parents will make a great difference in their level of happiness at work. Here are three family support perks you can consider offering:
- Onsite childcare: Giving employees with small children the option of cutting out their daily commute to daycare not only helps them save time and energy but also will reduce instances of being late or needing to leave early due to childcare issues.
- Paternity leave: Show your awareness of the role a father plays in his infant's first few months of life. This is going to be an attractive perk for many employees and prospective hires, since, unlike maternity leave, it is not a standard perk in today’s workforce.
- Support nursing and breastfeeding: While this may not be legally required, it is always good to show support for new mothers to increase morale and loyalty. Trying to create comfortable places where they can nurse or go to pump breastmilk supports them as they grow their family and is a good perk to offer.
Employee Perks: Wellness
The number one requirement for employee productivity is health. Support your employee’s health by offering enough sick leave for when they are under the weather and create a culture where it is acceptable to take time off work. This will also keep the office environment healthier in general, as contagious people will be able to stay home until they are well. Also, this culture of wellness will mean that, instead of working while sick and being sick for longer, the average length of an illness will be shortened by being able to take proper rest.
Unique Employee Benefits: Above Average Medical, Dental, and Vision
Good health benefits are the second biggest reason employees stay with a job, or leave a job, according to Globe News Wire. If your small business does not already offer health benefits, consider adding them to your business. If you already do offer health benefits, consider an upgrade to a better plan, covering more of the monthly premium, and increasing the number of paid sick days. Healthy employees are happier employees and if they know that their doctor’s visits, dental exams, and eyeglasses are covered, they’ll have more time and energy to focus on work.
Gym Memberships and Wellness Programs
Offering your employees a gym membership not only tells them they’re valued as employees, but that you take their health seriously. A gym membership can also keep healthcare costs down as employee’s become healthier. Many gyms offer corporate packages that can be customized to fit your needs.
Support wellness within your company by including mental health days in your sick leave program. Making it clear that these days are for self-care creates a culture where wellness, not burnout, is supported.
One more way to support wellness within your company as an employee perk is to support proper ergonomics. Not only will healthy ergonomics lower health costs in the long run, but a comfortable staff is also healthy and productive. Consider offering standing desks and other ergonomic accessories, like back cushions, footrests, or monitor stands. If you want help designing an ergonomics plan that’s right for your company, BioFunctional Health Solutions is here to help. They are a veteran-owned company that coined the term “health assurance” as they work with employers to keep their employees healthy by offering on-site nursing and workplace first aid, and a complete ergonomics package designed to keep your employees productive and pain-free. In conclusion, the costs of offering unique employee benefits and perks are outweighed by long-term gains of retainment, productivity, and positive work culture.
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