Four reasons employee benefits should be a top priority in 2015

by 05 Feb 2015
Offering an employee benefits solution that delivers no real value is as useful as taking a significant amount of your business’ money and setting it a light.

There are obvious differences between the outcomes of well thought out programs that provide benefits beyond expectation, and those that take more of a ‘they’re doing it so we should too’ approach.

Well executed employee benefits should align to a company’s goals or address a specific outcome, and consider individual circumstances. It’s the difference between your employee benefits program losing you money, or saving you money.

It may surprise you that effective employee benefits could be the game changer to your business achieving more in 2015.

Effective benefits can influence behaviour

According to a Mercer 2014 report, ‘benefits can have a significant impact on the way people conduct themselves for the company.’ Ensuring your benefits aren’t arbitrarily chosen is key. It’s a fairly simple logic; if a focus area is employee health and wellbeing to improve productivity and lower the number of sick days, providing discounted gym memberships or a social fitness club are a perfect fit. It’s easy to create this alignment with low-cost benefits you could implement today, that result in a positive shift in your employee’s willingness and ability to give more.

Effective benefits can reduce turnover costs

Your employees aren’t likely to leave your organisation if you’re offering them something that they wouldn’t want to give up. A Mercer study showed organisations with effective benefit plans have lower turnover in addition to lower overall salary increases. In fact, the study states that providing effective benefits could save a company of 150 employees $308,000 per annum in turnover costs. The right benefits are a huge reason to stay, which is repeatedly proven by companies like Google, Zappos and Atlassian, whose innovative approach to benefits continually ranks them as best places to work.

Effective benefits help to attract great people

While effective benefits can ensure you keep the people you want inside your business, they are also a powerful drawcard for skilled labour in a competitive market. If the perfect candidate’s choice comes down to a company that offers additional annual leave and discounts on everyday items alongside one that doesn’t, there is no further argument. 80% of working Australians see employee benefits as an important consideration when joining an organisation and 100% of HR managers agree. With a market full of employees shopping around to find the best offer from an employer, businesses without effective benefits will be fighting a losing battle.

Effective benefits positively impact your bottom line

Now this is the big one. We know effective employee benefits are proven to impact the attraction of great employees, consequently improving a company’s overall performance. Benefits can then retain them for the long term, potentially saving an organisation hundreds of thousands of dollars per year. But what about the bottom line results from the wider impact on softer aspects? It may not be a black and white calculation, but benefits that resonate with your employees can change a culture, increase morale, and improve productivity and engagement. Combined, these aspects deliver greater output and enhanced financial performance for your business.

The reasons to invest in the right mix of innovative and competitive employee benefits are clear.

Don’t wait another year, offer them what they can’t resist now and you could find the real value for your organisation too.

About the author

Michaela Brown is a team member of Accumulate, an Australian company specialising in employee loyalty and engagement.