Attract Better Employees with Better Benefits
In a good economy, smart business owners know that a benefits package needs to fan a candidate’s excitement for joining the team. Serving up the usual can do just the opposite, driving a strong potential employee into the hands of a competitor. A diverse team will have a diverse set of needs and choosing benefits that match can identify your business as one that doesn’t just compensate talented individuals, but cares for them as well. And remember, a financial professional can help ensure that you pick benefits with the most value for your business.
Believe it or not, studies show that a whopping 75 percent of employees feel that it is very important that their employer provides dental coverage.1 Dental care is at least an annual expense for most people, and a young, healthy person may even see their dentist more often than their doctor. Some group dental plans even offer ancillary perks like college tuition benefits (to retain or gift), meaning they can serve a range of needs in a single plan. Your diverse team members will appreciate the flexibility.
Different generations have different priorities and timelines to follow. Younger generations are passionate about saving money, but don’t always know where to begin. Having a job, even a good job, doesn’t mean they’re not living month-to-month. Other generations worry about retirement planning. This kind of anxiety can’t help morale or productivity. Offering access to a financial professional can give employees much-needed knowledge about how to manage the money they’re earning.
Income protection, also known as disability benefits, can be a powerful way of helping your employees feel confident and motivated. Often, people don’t consider that protecting their income is key to financial health and look to employers to provide income protection beyond their paychecks. Offering this protection, beyond the group minimums, can be a strong incentive to stay at a company, especially as an employee ages and the risk of long-term illness increases.
Unfortunately, sometimes a busy work life can make it hard to live a balanced lifestyle. Long hours can make it harder to get to the gym or cook healthy food. Employees will appreciate a company that offers a helping hand in their quest for health, whether it’s a smoking cessation program or a benefits package that rewards them for hitting their step goals.
Student Loan Assistance
Amid rising education costs, it’s common to find employees who are struggling to pay off student loans. Since a distracted employee is a less productive employee, alleviating these kinds of worries can even benefit your bottom line. A benefits package that matches employees’ monthly loan payments, or pays a fixed sum each month, is immensely attractive to young professionals who are looking for a way out of debt as well as a great company to work with.
Generous Parental Leave
The U.S. is one of five nations in the world that doesn’t guarantee paid parental leave (the others are Lesotho, Liberia, Papua New Guinea and Swaziland). A more generous, family focused, “European-style” leave policy can signal that you’re a forward-looking, egalitarian workplace. Parents who get paid leave are more likely to continue their careers, allowing you to continue reaping the benefits of their experience and training.
Transit Passes and Gas Cards
Commuting can be an expensive and time-consuming way to start your day. You can’t shorten the trip, but you can reduce the expense by including a pre-tax transit or gas payment card in your benefits package. For many employees, the goodwill you’ll create is at least as refreshing as a cup of coffee!
Taxes are inescapable but filling out all the paperwork yourself is still optional. Access to or a discount on tax preparation is a benefit that will be worth its weight in gold to many employees. They can use the benefit directly every April, and you can leverage a tax assistance benefit as an opportunity to educate them on the other tax advantaged programs your company may offer.
Whether you are considering starting a benefits program, expanding or redesigning, a financial professional can help you design a program to meet the needs of your diverse team. While not every benefit listed here is appropriate or affordable for every business, even adding one or two can make your company a more attractive workplace.
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1 National Association of Dental Plans Survey, as cited by Atlanta Business Chronicle, “Dental benefits are a competitive advantage for employers,” February 20, 2017.