Negosentro.com | 5 Budget Employee Benefits that Small Businesses Should Offer in These Times | As a small business owner, you have to serve the needs of your customers, business, and employees simultaneously. Striking the right balance between these needs is what leads to sustained profitability, loyalty, and long-term success.
When it comes to providing benefits for your employees, it’s not realistic to consider perks you can find on Google’s campus, like catered lunches every day. Small businesses have small budgets to match!
But just because you can’t afford the frills, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t offer any benefits at all. It’s important to support your employees as they support your business. You also need to stay competitive with other employers and make your business attractive for applicants.
So which benefits are the most important? Prioritize these 5 perks.
Parental Leave is A Must!
In the United States, people often have to decide between their career and having a family. If you want to keep your best employees for as long as possible, you need to be accommodating and support them in their personal goals. That includes offering parental leave!
Parental leave policies around the world vary, but employers aren’t currently required to offer it in most US states, meaning that many people end up quitting their jobs or not being able to return after having children. While offering paid leave is ideal if the budget allows, even unpaid leave can help support new parents who don’t want to quit their job.
Offering maternity, paternity, and adoption leave boosts morale and helps employees to feel more secure. It can also help to reduce turnover and allow you to retain your best workers. However, it’s important to prepare for parental leave and ensure that your other employees are trained to cover for anyone who uses this important benefit.
Allow for Cultural Expression & Inclusion
We live in a beautifully diverse culture, but many people are excluded from the conversation, whether purposefully or not. If you want your business to thrive, it’s important to make it an inclusive work culture where people feel comfortable expressing themselves and sharing their ideas.
Diversity in the workplace goes far, far beyond hiring. You have to make an effort to acknowledge and confront unconscious biases in your workforce (especially within leadership positions), create an inclusive and collaborative culture, and offer ongoing opportunities for learning and training.
Creating an environment where diversity and cultural expression thrive isn’t easy. But it’s a key benefit that will serve your business and your employees well. Plus, it costs you very little to be inclusive!
Mental Health Resources… Including Mental Health Days Off
In the last few years, we’ve finally brought the mental health discussion into the workplace—kind of. There’s still a lot of work to be done, but at least we’re beginning to see that mental health is just as important as physical health when it comes to well-being, happiness, and productivity.
One incredible benefit small businesses can offer employees is the gift of supporting mental health. Many people struggle with issues like depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, PTSD, addiction (even work addiction!), and other mental health conditions, but lack the resources to manage them or can’t take time off from work without fear of losing their jobs.
Small businesses can take that pressure off by offering mental health resources as a perk. If you offer health insurance, make sure that mental health coverage is included. Do some research about resources that you can provide for your employees at a low cost.
Above all, be flexible and understanding. No one’s mental health is perfect, and we all need the ability to take care of ourselves from time to time without guilt. Allowing for mental health days off from work or flexible schedules to fit in therapy appointments not only gives employees space to cope with any issues they might be having but also shows that you and your business are supportive of your team and want each employee to thrive.
Workers Compensation is Also a Must!
Obviously, it’s best to prevent accidents in the workplace whenever possible by committing to the highest level of safety standards. But the nature of accidents is that they’re unexpected! Even in the safest workplaces, injuries can occur.
Not all states require employers to have worker’s compensation insurance. But even if your state doesn’t require it, it’s an important safeguard to have in place. That way, your employees will be compensated if they are hurt on the job and are out of work for more than a few days.
Worker’s compensation insurance is a must. It shows you care and it protects your employees. Your industry might not be known for accidents, but even something as simple as someone slipping and falling while mopping the floor can put an employee out of commission. Think ahead and provide this important benefit!
In the Digital Age, Remote Work Options Can be a Great Perk!
In the last few months, many businesses have shifted their work online due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While this obviously isn’t possible for businesses like coffee shops or hair salons, small businesses that can operate remotely might want to think about extending that work from home policy even as it becomes safer to gather in an office setting.
Whether you consider offering 100% remote opportunities or just the flexibility to work from home one or two days a week, remote work is an appealing perk for today’s employees. People want to be able to balance their home and work responsibilities with less stress and guilt. Plus, some people find that they are more productive at home than they are in the office.
One of the best aspects of remote work is that it’s budget-friendly. You don’t have to make much of an additional investment to allow your employees to work from home. It’s a great way to balance the needs of your company with the needs of your employees.
Benefits Show That You Care
People want to be compensated fairly for their work, but money isn’t the only factor in retaining top employees. Freedom, respect, support, and security are all important! Benefits don’t have to be costly, but they need to show that you care.
Every successful business relies on hard work and human relationships. Remind your employees how important they are by supporting them with the perks they really want.