The COVID-19 pandemic has had far-reaching effects on the world of work, including a rapid shift in employee benefits needs and preferences.
Employers are now recognizing the importance of reconsidering their offerings to accommodate both onsite and remote employees. By providing varied, flexible, and accessible options, companies can ensure their employees are well-supported regardless of their work location.
Investing in High-Quality Technology for Remote Workers
One key aspect of supporting remote workers is providing high-quality technology. Instead of relying on employees’ personal devices, companies are making significant investments in equipment such as computers, smartphones, cameras, and lighting for video calls. Additionally, they are adopting software like Slack, Zoom, and SharePoint to make remote work more efficient and effective. This approach is still cost-effective, as organizations save on office rent and other related expenses.
Expanding Virtual Learning and Career Development Opportunities
Employees increasingly value virtual learning and career development opportunities as key components of a desirable workplace. By offering high-quality online training options in addition to in-person sessions, employers can ensure that both onsite and remote employees have access to professional growth opportunities.
The Importance of Flexibility for All Workers
Flexibility is a top priority for both onsite and remote employees. According to a study from Gusto, 45 percent of workers who refused their last job offer cited a lack of flexibility or work/life balance as a critical factor in their decision. Moreover, 48 percent of respondents indicated that being able to work from home some or all of the time would be the most crucial factor in whether they accepted a job offer. Therefore, employers must prioritize flexibility in their employee benefits packages to attract and retain talent.
Traditional Benefits and Their Impact on Retention
While employee preferences have evolved during the pandemic, many traditional benefits like health and retirement plans remain essential. Gusto’s research shows that offering 401(k) plans has a significant positive impact on retention, with employees being 40 percent less likely to leave a job in their first year if provided with retirement benefits. Employers must not overlook the value of these tried-and-true benefits.
Creative Benefits Options for a Diverse Workforce
Employers can also offer a range of innovative benefits to cater to the diverse needs of their workforce. Some examples include caregiver benefits, in-home fitness and wellness perks, mental and physical wellness resources, meal delivery, identity-theft protection programs, Amazon Prime memberships, and pet supply delivery. Companies can set themselves apart in a competitive job market by offering unique and varied benefits.
Ensuring Equity and Effective Communication for All Employees
Maintaining equity between onsite and remote employees when it comes to benefits offerings is crucial. A remote employee could become an onsite employee at any time and vice versa. For example, a company with an onsite fitness center should also provide remote employees with a comparable health club benefit. Effective communication is also vital in ensuring that all employees know the benefits available to them.
Reimagining Benefits Offerings to Attract and Retain Talent
By reimagining their benefits packages and paying close attention to shifting employee preferences, employers can better position themselves to attract and retain talent in a tight labor market. In addition, by providing equitable benefits for remote and onsite employees, companies can create an inclusive and supportive work environment that fosters success and growth for all.
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This is not intended to be exhaustive nor should any discussion or opinions be construed as legal advice. Readers should contact legal counsel or an insurance professional for appropriate advice.