When money is tight in a small business, it can be tempting to dismiss exploring extra benefits or perks to offer your staff, on the basis that you feel you should prioritise paying competitive salaries. But there is definitely a value in doing what you can to enhance the package you offer your staff.

There are four key areas of running a business which can see significant improvements through implementation of at least some limited benefits for staff over-and-above salary.

Attraction

Whilst candidates for jobs you are recruiting for will obviously look at what salary you might be paying, they will also be interested in what additional benefits you offer. Employee benefits are your opportunity to demonstrate that you are a good employer, to differentiate yourself from other businesses competing for talent locally, and to show that you value your staff.

Through elaborating on what benefits your staff get, you can demonstrate the culture of your organisation to ensure candidates who would be a good ‘fit’ for that culture are attracted to apply for jobs, and show potential candidates that you (for example) value their wellbeing and promote a good work-life balance.

Retention

As well as attracting new talent to your business, you want to ensure you retain key staff, and reduce employee turnover to a manageable level. Keeping good staff is key to a successful business as high turnover results in disruption, time and money spent recruiting and then more time and money spent getting new staff up to speed, dealing with reduced productivity in the meantime.

So your employee benefits can also be a good way to ensure existing staff feel valued. The right benefits can boost morale, increase loyalty, and make your employees feel a stronger bond with your business, which will keep them with you long term.

Productivity and cost saving

Employees are more likely to ‘go the extra mile’ for an employer they feel values and supports them, therefore a good benefits package can support high performance and productivity. However this is further enhanced when you consider health and wellbeing-related benefits. Offering these can directly reduce the amount of time staff spend either off sick or working at lower productivity for health reasons, therefore can make a huge difference to performance levels and the costs of sick pay and temporary staff to cover absence in your business.

Staff who are physically and mentally fit and feel a good sense of wellbeing at work perform much better than those who are either constantly under par physically or off sick a lot, or just stressed and unhappy in the workplace.

Culture enhancement

Careful choice of the right benefits can help enhance and reinforce the culture you want to promote in your business. For example if you want to foster a culture of a good work-life balance, other than just saying that’s what you want to do, or putting in place a flexible working policy, you can do practical things in terms of choosing benefits which support that, and reinforce your commitment to developing that culture with your staff.

Employee benefits don’t need to be expensive to be of value, so even if budgets are tight in your small business, it’s worth exploring putting something in place, as the right ones can have significant commercial benefits.

 

If you’d like some advice on implementing employee benefits, do get in touch.