Employee benefits are one of the main reasons that help some of the most talented and highly skilled employees decide on working for a particular company. It is also one of the main reasons that they stay on and are happy to remain with the company; and consequently keeping the staff turnover low. In most cases, a good benefits program also keeps staff motivation high.

Here are some things to consider in developing a benefits program for your employees:

1. All companies should have a benefits program. This program should be well planned, developed and implemented. Some of the regular benefits include vacation time or paid vacation leaves, paid sick leave or sick pay, health care or health insurance plan, disability insurance, dental, education reimbursement, life insurance, food allowance, clothing allowance and pension plans

2. Don't think that only big companies can provide certain benefits. With careful planning and consultation – which, if possible, may include meetings with HR specialists or consultancies outside of the company – you should be able to provide reward and recognition programs, employee self service, flexible work hours and other arrangements, employee contact centre, employee discounts and surveys. 

3. To develop a competitive employee benefits program, you should always keep in mind every step of the way that this is a crucial factor in attracting the best employees for the job and that it's also crucial factor in helping them decide to stay with the company. With that in mind, you would be able to realize that it is important to find out which benefits are on top of your employees' lists.

4. One of the most important benefits is the health care or health insurance plan. Some companies offer coverage for the employee, while some offer coverage for employees and their dependents. Most companies shoulder the bill for consultations, certain tests and hospitalization up to a certain amount. For expenses beyond the set cost, some companies offer assistance in shouldering hospital bills and expenses for medicines.      

5. Retirement or, in some cases, pension plan is another benefit that most employees consider very important. Some consider dental plans as just bonus benefits; as some would think of disability benefits. People who work in higher-risk jobs, however, would think of disability and other similar benefits as a top priority. 

6. Some benefits, depending on a number of factors that include sex, age, economic background, are more important to some employees. So finding out what your employee consider important is key. Ask them, consult your human resources team and, if possible, conduct a survey. Consulting with your human resources department would also help you find out the characteristics or make up of the majority of your employees. From that information, you will be able to develop benefits programs that most of your employees will find attractive.      

7. Through consultation with human resources and with their employees, some companies have come up with specific, non traditional employee benefits programs for their employees. Some of these include wellness or fitness programs, parking privileges, and loans to buy computers and other similar equipment.

Hannah Miles


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