Max Messmer, chairman of Accountemps and author of Human Resources Kit For Dummies, says, “On the heels of the recession, perks are a cost-effective way employers can reward and retain staff and attract new employees. The most popular incentives are those that aid in career development and give employees some control over their work schedules.”
As a strategic partner of the business owner and an employee advocate and mentor, the HR professional is in a position to help promote both the business and the opportunities for employees by suggesting perks and benefits. While benefits such as pensions, profit-sharing plans, health insurance plans, vacations and sick days are often fairly cut and dried, perks and ancillary benefits are an area where you can come up with creative ideas that will help attract and retain employees.
Here are some suggestions about how you can sweeten the pot with non-monetary benefits and perks.
1. Tuition Reimbursement
Since incentives that aid in career development are among the most popular, consider providing employees with a tuition reimbursement plan. The IRS lets companies contribute up to several thousand dollars per student tax free, and you can also set up a benefit that pays a percentage of tuition or training costs, rather than the full amount.
2. Flexible Schedules
Employees are empowered by being able to set their own work schedule and having an option to telecommute. Flexible schedules are among the top ways an employer can attract and retain employees.
3. In-Office Daycare
If there are a considerable number of parents of tots at your company, this kind of perk could be a huge draw.
4. Free Parking
Parking can be a big expense in many large cities, and offering to subsidize your employees’ parking expenses is a great way to encourage retention and build morale.
5. Health Club Memberships
Consider paying for the initial membership fee and all or a portion of your employees’ monthly fees to a nearby health club. You may be able to negotiate a substantial discount for your company, and the health club memberships may have an effect on the overall health of your employees, reducing costs in other areas such as sick days.
6. Onsite Massage Therapy and/or Ergonomics
Office chair massage is popular due to its portability and capacity to reduce stress. And ergonomic benefits such as ergonomic chairs and workstations can contribute to high employee productivity, as well as the avoidance of illness and injury risks.
When considering ancillary incentives to offer employees, be creative and have fun with your ideas, and do not neglect to advertise these new benefits after you set them up. Almost everyone admits to the desire to work in a comfortable, casual environment with lots of added perks and benefits.
For additional information, please call a member of CAI’s Advice and Counsel team at (919) 878-9222 or (336) 668-7746.
Photo source: Nieve44/La Luz