Get 'Em and Keep 'Em: Cutting Edge Benefits That Don't Cost a Thing

Business.com / Hiring / Last Modified: February 22, 2017

As workplaces continue to compete for top talent, the best are pulling out all the stops to get and keep the best in the industry.

As workplaces continue to compete for top talent, the most motivated are pulling out all the stops to get and keep the best in the industry.

How can you remain competitive with best-in-class benefits and top salaries offered by your competitors? Easy.

By providing cutting edge benefits that don't cost a thing.

According to Sean Park, a Managing Attorney of Sean Park Law, "Not only will these benefits help you satisfy and retain the employees you already have, but they'll improve word-of-mouth surrounding your company and make new positions an easier sell to the strongest candidates."

Try these unique benefits that don't cost anything except time and commitment from the leadership team to transform your recruitment and retention success.

Related Article:A Good Investment: How Keeping Employees Happy Benefits a Business

Offer Flexible Work Hours

As more and more parents enter the workforce, flexible hours are an invaluable benefit that doesn't cost the company a dime. You can use endless variations to ensure business needs are being met while employee needs are noted and provided for. Here are a few ways to provide this benefit:

  • Allow employees to work 10 eight-hour days, nine nine-hour days, or eight 10-hour days in any given two-week period
  • Enable employees to arrive anytime during a specified period and work their scheduled number of hours from there (i.e. arrival anytime between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m.)
  • Throughout the week allow employees to make up time off by working longer days to limit their required use of vacation time to real vacation time rather than appointments and school drop-offs

According to Dr. David Javitch, an organizational psychologist, flexible schedules promote work-life balance by allowing employees time to get their kids off to school, provide morning cares for elderly parents, and avoid heavy commutes.

Establish a Wellness Club

Employee wellness and accountability are vital benefits to both the company and the employee. Wellness programs can range from free to very costly, depending on what you choose to offer. To keep your wellness program free, consider designing a competitive program where employees report their daily steps and water intake through a private Facebook group for employees only.

Write policies and procedures to support your wellness program. These will promote fitness, wellness, and accountability and provides a platform for discussion and camaraderie. It builds relationships among staff and doesn't cost the company anything.

To up the ante, consider providing a non-monetary benefit to employees who lose the greatest percentage of their weight during a specified period (such as a three-month push during the year). Non-monetary benefits may include dressing casually for a week, telecommuting for a few days, or an extra day of vacation.

Another great way to promote health and wellness at work is to organize a monthly or healthy quarterly potluck, encouraging contributors to bring healthy offerings for the group.

Related Article: Employee Benefits: Creative Additions that Don’t Kill the Payroll Budget

Offer a Casual Dress Code

While you may need your employees to dress business professional when meeting with clients, establishing a casual dress code for days in the office is a great benefit to most employees that doesn't cost the company anything. Many employees get excited about a jeans day and see a casual dress code as a benefit when making decisions about employment.

As a matter of fact, Business Research Lab indicates that a casual dress code sends the message that all employees are being treated equally, and employers should be open to trying new things. If you already offer a casual dress code, consider offering a sweats day on Fridays for anyone not scheduled to meet with a client.

Set Up Outdoor or Mobile Workstations

If many of your employees work from laptops, setting up a few benches and patio tables outside can be a great way to encourage employees to get a breath of fresh air and move throughout the day.

Having community areas throughout the building can allow for open group meetings and alternative work spaces at little or no cost to the company (often, simple couches and chairs are already in the area and employers just need to communicate that employees are encouraged and permitted to work in these areas).

Consider Telecommuting

More and more employees are seeking telecommuting arrangements to relieve themselves of their daily commute and provide a productive work environment with fewer interruptions and the option to multi-task (where they can load the washing machine during a 10-minute break, for example).

Think about which positions within the company are a good fit for telecommuting and offer those employees a formal telecommuting schedule, such as one day a week, if they prefer, and then implement a telecommuting program. Having a telecommuting program can be a leading selling point when recruiting new staff.

Related Article: Awesome Employee Benefits: Attract and Retain Talent With No or Little Cost to Your Business

Inspire Your Staff

Daily motivation can transform the environment and retain employees, which in turn improves your employee ratings on employer grading platforms. Sending out company-wide emails acknowledging achievements, promotions, and work anniversaries can encourage and motivate your staff and is a simple and free way to improve morale and engagement.

Bottom Line

Today's workforce is looking for more creative benefits that display an organization's commitment to work-life balance and employee wellness. As you see, you can offer what employees are looking for without investing your life's savings and cutting back in other areas. Once you let your imagination go, the possibilities are endless.

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