As we settle back into the daily grind at work, businesses must prepare for a turbulent year ahead with research by Robert Half suggesting one in three (31%) employees plan to look for a new job in 2020.
A competitive salary is no longer enough. Employees seek ‘work perks’ that make their lives easier, cheaper and foster career development. It is a competitive world and an employee’s market ― to remain competitive, businesses must recognise the importance of non-salary benefits and deliver a strategic employee value proposition to attract, develop and retain top talent.
Work perks don’t need to break the bank – something as simple as flexibility in hours or a birthday day off can make a world of difference. To determine what work perks are right for your business and employees, consider the pointers below.
- Know what benefits practically work for your company. Not every workplace can follow Richard Branson’s lead and provide unlimited annual leave. Instead, think of small things that can make employees’ lives easier or incentivise them to come into work. For example, team fitness or morning teas, or providing weekly yoga classes can help employees focus and relax, while employers gain the benefit of a healthier and more focused workforce.
- Understand where your workforce is at in life and what perks matter most to them. Workplaces are unique environments with employees in different stages of their life. Some workplaces may have a younger and social demographic, while another has life or family responsibilities. If there is a clear trend in your workforce, consider what benefits would work best for them in their stage of life. For example, flexibility to pick up and drop off the kids at school will be an important and valuable perk for employees with young families.
- Structure and a clear pathway to career development is a must-have perk. Having a clear pathway forward in career development is important for many employees and in many cases, is the best benefit an employer can offer. The first step is making sure there is a simple and effective performance management system in place that allows employers and employees to work together to measure performance, personal goals and the path to achieving success.
- Like any part of your business, reviewing your benefits is key to making sure they are still relevant to your workforce. Taking ongoing review of the perks on offer and how frequently they are used and by whom is a good way to determine if they are hitting the mark. Bringing in your employees to get their thoughts on the benefits program can help recalibrate what is on offer to add more value to your employees.
- Reduce the amount of time your employees spend on admin. Consider a software solution that can make your employees’ lives easier by streamlining processes – from data entry to timesheets and HR. The right tools can reduce employee frustrations and boredom, instead keeping your team engaged and focused on the work that matters – it’s win, win.
At ELMO, we seek to understand what matters most to our people and how the perks help improve their time at work. We hold yoga classes, charitable events, career development pathways, emergent leader programs, and offer an in-house barista and café, flexible working, peer rewards and recognition, plus quarterly social events to celebrate milestones ― all of which and more have helped us to connect, engage and motivate our teams.
Perhaps not all will work for your business, but with so many employees looking to change workplaces in 2020, consider what perks you can offer to attract, develop and retain top talent.
Monica Watt is Chief Human Resources Officer at ELMO Software.