What company benefits do you offer?

When an employee is considering whether or not to accept a new job, the company benefits on offer will be high on their list of considerations.

A basic salary and pension are not enough as they will be looking to see what else is available.

You may not be able to offer all lavish perks offered by large corporate or innovative tech companies. But this doesn’t mean you have to lag behind the pack. Other than private health insurance and life assurance, what else could you consider providing? There could be perks that won’t break the bank and can give you the edge over a competitor?

Free food and drink – You can get everyone together, give a business update. Afterwards, you can enjoy some crowd-pleasing food for lunch. Depending on your budget, this could be done on a regular or ad hoc basis.

Alternatively, you could just offer some free fruit, or a complimentary breakfast every now and then.

Gym memberships – You can subsidise gym membership by reimbursing the employee each month a proportion of the fees they pay.

If this is too expensive you could just try and organise some sports events. This could be a 5 a side football, tennis or basketball. This would just involve hiring out a court or pitch for an hour and renting out some equipment.

Either way, it helps get employees into shape or keep fit, relieve stress and even have some fun.

Flexible working arrangements – Whether it’s home working, staggered hours, compressed hours, term-time working, flexi-time or annualised hours, you can explore what options are viable for your organisation. Employers may have roles that require face-to-face contact, physical presence in the workplace or handling specialist equipment. These types of jobs do not lend themselves to home working, but there may be other arrangements that could work.

If you can make it work for your organisation, it can be a great way to attract new talent and retain key workers. Read our guide to find out more.

Paid volunteering days – Whether it is helping out at a food bank, running some activities at a school or care home, or doing some fundraising. It not only helps the local community but can also be a fantastic way to develop good working relationships across the business

Car share – Employers can do their bit to help the environment and alleviate the burden of having a small car park or none at all by introducing a car sharing incentive scheme. For example, if they give a colleague or multiple colleagues a lift to and from work X times a month, they can claim an allowance.

Bring your dog to work days – Some employers allow office workers to bring their dog into work. It is argued that allowing employees to bring their four-legged furry companions to work helps reduce their stress levels, improve job satisfaction and increase staff morale.

Employers must remember their duty to ensure the safety, health and welfare, in so far as is reasonably practicable, of employees. This means that you should carry out a risk assessment for each and every dog that an employee wishes to bring into work. Read more about bringing dogs to work here.

Extra days off – For example, if it’s their birthday or they’re getting married, you may wish to allow them some extra paid annual leave.

Discounts – You can negotiate with local businesses to see if discounts can be offered to employees. Any savings on lunches, clothes and events will be appreciated by your staff.

Alternatively depending on the nature of your business, you may be able to offer savings on your own products or services.

Salary sacrifice schemes – A salary sacrifice scheme is where an employee decides to give up part of their cash pay in exchange for a non-cash benefit, for example, the cycle to work scheme, childcare vouchers and increased pension contributions. Explore the recent changes to these schemes here.

Influenza vaccination – To keep colleagues fit and well, you could offer to reimburse the cost of colleagues having the flu jab.

Consult with your employees

When you are seeking to introduce a new benefit, make sure it is what your employees want.

There is no point offering gym membership to your 20 staff if you find out that none of them are remotely interesting going. Or introduce a ‘bring a dog into work’ day and find out none of them actually have pet dogs!

You should consult with employees in order to make an informed decision. Added to this you should listen to any suggestions that they may put forward.

What next?

If you do decide to go ahead, have found the right provider and agreed on the budget, you also need to think about whether you need to make changes to your HR policies, who at your organisation will be responsible for these schemes and how will you monitor the success of these benefits.

If you would like to discuss this further get in touch with us.

Director of Legal Services

James Tamm

Whether you’re facing an immediate challenge or just want the reassurance of an expert second opinion, we’re here to offer clear, commercial advice so that you can focus on what you do best.

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