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By Alex Watson, March 01, 2024 08:26 am

The Reality Behind Employee Benefits

You’ve been there – you find and offer some fantastic perks to your team, but if they aren’t actually relevant to them (or can’t even figure out how to access them) – what’s the point?…

It’s like throwing a party and neglecting to ask if someone is gluten free or vegan and forgetting to send out the invitations. So, what is the actual purpose of your employee benefits? How can they be more than generic box tickers gathering dust in a bottom drawer? How can they work for you to actually help you help those in your care so they can show up at their best? Let’s take a look!

Choosing your Benefits – Get Clear on your Objective

Retail discounts, gym memberships, dental… While benefits like these are often well-meaning, they can come across a bit ho-hum. Getting clear on the objective of your employee benefits is the very first place to start.

Is your objective to attract new talent? Reward existing employees? Retain your talent or have a few ‘knock their socks off’ supportive surprises for when life throws them a curveball? Maybe all of the above?…

What perks and benefits will best achieve those objectives? The best people to ask? Your people. Whether it’s a feedback survey asking them what makes them feel energised the most, or really listening to understand their needs during your regular check-ins – use these opportunities to get a feel for what benefits they’re craving. The best perks are the ones that actually matter to them.

Things like the “employee of the month” parking spot might seem like a sweet deal, but if half your team walks to work or relies on public transport, it’s not exactly a hot commodity, is it? Rethinking perks without a ‘one-size-fits-all’ mindset will ensure every member of your team feels as though they’re not left out of the equation.

By staying in touch, you can accurately reflect the growing wellness landscape in your employee initiatives, and in turn, have people who show up feeling cared for, motivated and at their best.

Navigating the Benefits Maze

Your company may already have a laundry list of benefits laid out for the team, but do they know where to find them or how to use them? Communication and simplicity is the name of the game, folks! It’s not enough to just toss out the occasional memo and call it a day. Get creative!

How about a “wellbeing theme of the month” to keep things fresh and focused? You could shine a spotlight on different aspects of employee wellness, like stress management, physical/mental health and work-life balance – and highlight the relevant benefit you have on offer to them for this theme each month.

Providing a centralised location for benefits information is also key so that it doesn’t get lost in the ‘ether.’ Think of it as your employee benefits command centre – a one-stop shop for all things that you have curated for them. It’s like giving everyone a treasure map with a big, shiny “X” marking the spot.

Asking for feedback is what will next serve you best. Asking questions like – are the benefits valuable to you? If so, which ones and how? If not, why and what would be better?

In the end, your employee wellbeing, engagement, motivation and performance will speak for itself. Creating and nurturing the environment for this to happen is up to you.

Inspiring Communication

As we take a closer look at employee benefits, let’s remember to focus on initiatives that truly uplift the employee experience and foster a positive workplace vibe.

Here are a couple of questions to ponder: What does my team say about work, outside of work? While appreciative of benefits, does my team have an interest in utilising what’s on offer?

By simplifying and personalising benefits and making them more accessible, companies can boost employee satisfaction and ramp up engagement. This proactive approach not only shows that you care about your team’s well-being but also sets the stage for overall business success!