So, you’ve decided it’s about time you started to reward your staff differently and provide more than the usual salary payments. You know this will help you stand out against your competitors when you recruit and help retain your best talent. But where do you start when putting together a perks and benefits package?
First you need to consider why you want to give your employee benefits. What do you want to achieve by providing certain perks and benefits? To be successful you need a clear vision in mind. This will make it easier to measure the success of the perks and benefits you use. Your motivation for choosing a certain benefit can vary. You may want to increase productivity and motivation, improve employee loyalty or generally improve team morale and working culture.
Remember, perks and benefits don’t have to be costly, you can choose low cost perk packages that can have just as big an impact on team morale as larger benefits and they can be tailored to suit each employer! Decide on a budget that best suits your business and choose the best perks and benefits that are within your budget. The possibilities are endless.
Decide the target employees for each benefit and perk you are going to offer. Ensure that you are meeting the needs/wants of all your employees. For example, think about perks and benefits that may fit different demographics. For example, research shows that some of the top three benefits that may encourage a millennial to take a job from employers are those that offer flexible working hours, have the option to buy and sell annual leave and are involved in social off-site events. Whereas baby boomers are more inclined to take a job from employers that offer professional development and have a good pension scheme. Benefits and perks are not specific to each demographic, and there are many that appeal across the board, however it is important to research and ask your employees which will compliment them in their working lives and personal lives.
It is important to do your research. There are LOAAAADS of providers offering very similar perks and benefits packages. To name just a few are; perkbox, perkpal and staff treats. All three of these, like many others, offer discounts on a wide range of high street stores, cinemas, supermarkets and restaurants. Prices will vary depending on number of employees the business has and can range from £8-£12 per employee. Ask questions and compare quotes from as many as you can and decide which is best for you and your employees. Don’t be afraid to ask for a discount!
Healthcare is a traditional benefit and is often thought of as expensive. It doesn’t have to be. Healthcare providers also offer cash plans (this is where employees benefit from cash back towards healthcare such as dental and optical treatment), which can start from as little as £5 per month per employee. Importantly, renewal prices are not impacted by previous claims keeping future costs affordable for employers. Remember putting in a benefit can be easy – taking it away is much more difficult.
Decide when it is appropriate to begin offering perks and benefits to employees. Consider things such as; waiting until after the probation period? This can provide an incentive for new employees and show that you have a lot to offer to loyal, hardworking employees and this will also ensure that long standing employees feel valued, and that in remaining loyal to your business they are being rewarded.
If you are going to offer several perks and benefits think about asking your employees to opt in. This way you are only paying for benefits that are valuable to your employees. This is also another good way to measure the success of a benefit.
Ensure that you know how to report perks and benefits to the HMRC and that you are compliant. Reporting depends on the benefit itself. Some benefits have a tax exemption within the benefits code, so things like pension salary sacrifice are exempt. Others will need to be reported on a P11D at the end of the tax year. However, for minor or irregular and benefits that are impractical to report, you can arrange a PAYE settlement agreement (PSA) with the HMRC where you as the employer will cover the gross up taxed and the national insurance contributions.
Without measuring the success of perks and benefits, you could be budgeting for things that are of no value to your business. Therefore, within your benefits and perks plan, it is important to decide how you are going to measure the success. Consider running an employee survey which can easily be done via free online packages such as Typeform. Ask your workforce if your employees are happy with the benefits and perks packages they are receiving. Do they think it has increased team morale and/or office culture? Also, having informal chats with your employees will help you to gage their experience of your new perks and benefits, and will help you to understand if they are having a positive impact.