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Consider Affordable Benefits That Employees Want

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Employee benefits are the cornerstone of a thriving organization. Perks and benefits are pivotal in enhancing job satisfaction, attraction and retention rates, employee well-being and overall workplace morale. While some organizations may feel constrained by budget limitations, there are numerous low- and no-cost benefits that can significantly impact employee happiness and productivity:

Flexible work arrangements — Many of today’s workers desire flexible work hours or the option to work remotely. This flexibility can greatly improve work-life balance and reduce stress levels. Remember that flexible work arrangements require clear policies and communication to ensure accountability and consistency among workers.

Flexible vacation policies — Instead of rigid vacation accrual systems, more employers are implementing unlimited or flexible vacation policies. However, flexible policies require trust and accountability from employees and may entail additional coordination to manage leave schedules.

Wellness programs — Popular wellness initiatives include yoga classes, meditation sessions or health challenges. Wellness programs are trending as a way to foster positive company culture, but it’s important to keep in mind that they often require commitment and resources for planning and implementation.

Family friendly policies — The path to and journey of parenthood are unique. Employers can offer attractive family friendly policies, such as parental leave, flexible childcare arrangements, generous nursing breaks or assistance with adoption expenses. Supporting employees in their family responsibilities can improve loyalty and morale.

Some other low — or no — cost benefits to consider include — professional development opportunities; employee recognition programs; employee assistance programs (EAPs); flexible spending accounts (FSAs) or health savings accounts (HSAs); financial education workshops; mentorship programs; paid volunteer time; casual dress code; summer hours; and employee discount programs.

In Conclusion

Offering employee benefits doesn’t have to come with a hefty price tag. These low- or no-cost benefits that workers value can enable employers to create a supportive and fulfilling work environment that, in turn, attracts and retains top talent. Investing in employee satisfaction not only boosts morale and productivity but also strengthens the overall success and reputation of the organization.

CAN YOU TELL ME MORE ABOUT FINANCIAL EDUCATION WORKSHOPS FOR EMPLOYEES?

More workers want guidance to increase their financial literacy. To meet this desire, employers can provide resources or workshops on personal finance management, budgeting and retirement planning. Empowering employees with financial literacy can alleviate stress and improve overall well-being.

WHAT IS AN EMPLOYEE ASSISTANCE PROGRAM (EAP)?

These programs can help employees save on health- care expenses, provide tax benefits and promote financial wellness. While such programs require administrative setup, the payoff can be worth it, as EAPs provide confidential support for employees dealing with personal or work-related issues. Some employer health plans include an EAP so make sure to review your plan today. Also, the MBA partners with WorkPartners to provide members an exclusive discount on EAP services (See mbausa.org/hr-and- legal-services/eap/ for more information).

WHAT ARE THE POSSIBLE BENEFITS OF IMPLEMENTING SUMMER HOURS AT A COMPANY?

To help boost employee morale and satisfaction during the summer months, employers can offer summer hours, such as closing an hour or two early on Fridays. This perk demonstrates flexibility and trust from the employer and can ultimately help improve employees’ work-life balance during vacation season.

Tammy Toman, JD, PHR is vice president and employment counsel at the Manufacturer & Business Association. Contact her at 814/833-3200, 800/815-2660 or ttoman@mbausa.org.