Over recent years, the wants and needs of employees have evolved. Findings from Deloitte (Global Talent Trends, 2018), for example, show that organisations don’t prioritise the things that matter the most to millennials, who are the fastest growing segment in the workforce. Many companies focus on profitability, yet the overriding millennial view is that it should be more about people than numbers. Their view is that priority should be to provide a positive social impact in the workplace through:
- Job creation
- Career progression
- Diversity and inclusion
The research also demonstrates that company culture is viewed as the most important consideration for millennials when deciding where they would like to work. An organisation’s mission, vision, values and reputation were rated equally as important when choosing an employer to work for (and also leaving one).
Competitive pay and good benefits do influence an employee’s decision to join and remain at a company, but there are many wants and needs that can be overlooked. From seeing first-hand at Corecom Consulting some of the varied and impressive employee benefits, here are four top employee benefits that we are seeing more and more and which have been the main attraction for prospective employees:
- Flexible working
It is apparent that the 9.00am – 5.00pm working day is outdated. 51% of employees say that they seek more flexibility in the workplace. Working parents, for example, scored flexibility in the workplace ahead of pay, with 84% stating that this was their primary priority in a job. Work-life balance came in next at 80%.
For flexibility to work well for both employees and employers, there needs to be a level of trust between them and a culture where this can work efficiently. It involves planning the who, what, when, where and how of work. Employers need to provide the right technology to support remote working, providing the support required for positive flexibility.
Companies who are adopting fixed workplace flexibility arrangements, including reviewing their flexibility policies and addressing the barriers around flexible working are those that are flourishing, with employees being encouraged to take up the flexible benefits on offer. This has reduced workplace stress, boosted mental well-being and encouraged productivity.
Recommended Resource: How Flexible Working can increase Recruitment and Retention (includes Flexible Working Proposal Form for use in your organisation)
- Wellness, health and mental wellbeing
Employees need to feel cared for, respected and be able to grow within a company. Activities and initiatives can reassure employees that their wellbeing is at the heart of the business. This can be done through, not just healthy eating and exercise advice, but also through guidance on how to deal with stress and who they can talk to when they need support or advice. Providing physical, psychological and financial support shows employees that their employer really cares about their health and wellbeing.
Need some workplace wellness ideas? Take a look at our Photo Gallery which is full of employee engagement initiatives and activities.
As well as the above, employers should consider offering employees opportunities such as:
- Stress relief initiatives
- Mental health days
- Standing desks
- Meditation classes
- Exercise/physical activity classes
Providing perks shows employees that a company prioritises their happiness and enjoyment and that they are invested in them. Common and well received perks that businesses provide to employees include, for example:
- healthcare plans
- gym memberships
- buying extra holiday days schemes
- duvet days
- day off on your birthday
- pizza days
Engaging with your team is recommended to gather some ideas of which perks would add the most value and excitement to their lives. You could, for example, distribute a questionnaire or hold a group brainstorming session in order to gain feedback.
- Having a purpose
To ensure employees are happy, stay with and grow with a company long-term, they need to feel like there is a reason behind the work they are doing to give them a purpose. Employers can give employees purpose and ensure that they feel valued through providing:
Letting employees know their work is appreciated and important creates increased morale, motivation and a good culture within the business, which will shine through to clients.
Recommended resource: Five methods to boost employee engagement
Managers can try using Pontefract’s Six C’s of successful leadership:
- Connect: regularly engage with people on both an emotional and transformational level
- Consider: consider as many options as possible, asking people around you for their input before making a decision
- Communicate: when a decision has been made, be proactive in your communication – let people know
- Create: make the next step to execute the decision and communicate this with an engaging approach
- Confirm: has the decision been implemented? Make sure that you keep people focused and hold them accountable
- Congratulate: celebrate and congratulate good work, recognising successes
Every employee will have differing priorities and values which will influence their engagement levels, job fulfilment and loyalty to a company. These obviously won’t be the same for each individual so your engagement approach should consider differing generations, be inclusive and be balanced so that each employee gains value.