Traditional benefits have come to be expected and unless a company offers excellent standard traditional benefits, they will not be very effective in terms of recruitment and retainment.
Non-traditional benefits pay for themselves, which we will discuss in more detail.
It may seem like non-traditional benefits are non-value-added frills, but that is not the case.
As salaries become stagnant or even drop, it becomes even more important to employees to manage their stress, and non-traditional benefits help with that.
Google makes a big deal about its non-traditional benefits, and even has videos and pictures showing massage therapists, holiday parties, and more. This serves a dual purpose to show potential employees what the corporate culture is like at Google, which assists HR managers in recruiting, hiring, and retaining employees. Employees can also self-screen if they don’t think a company’s non-traditional benefits sound attractive (ex: exercise, same-sex partner benefits, etc.).
If executives do not buy-in and promote these benefits packages, employees will feel like they are being offered a benefit that doesn’t really exist, and that will erode their trust in the firm, which decreases organizational commitment.When building a benefits plan, HR managers can survey employees or do focus groups and interviews to determine what kinds of benefits employees value.
What about an on-site bookstore, like at a college campus? It could include helpful professional resources as well as company-branded items like clothing, coffee mugs, etc. During my research I also read that one company hosts a weekly farmer’s market in the parking lot. Other potential downsides: it may take a while to start up a more robust non-traditional benefits program, also these extras could lure employees away from their desks and de-stress them a little too much.
NON-TRADITIONAL BENEFITS: IT PAYS TO PLAY Human Resources Management Lauren Perry
INTRODUCTION Companies offer benefits as a way of attracting employees, beyond just salary Traditional benefits normally include health insurance, retirement accounts, and paid time off, and cost an additional 30% annual salary To be globally competitive and assist employees with a positive work-life balance, employers have turned to non- traditional benefits
WHAT ARE NON-TRADITIONAL BENEFITS? Non-traditional benefits are diverse and wide-ranging Tuition reimbursement, adoption assistance, legal assistance, flexible hours and work weeks, telecommuting, pet insurance On-site services such as cafeteria, fitness center, car maintenance, laundry, child care, and more
POSITIVE EFFECTS To avoid burnout and turnover, employees need to perceive that their firm cares about them Non-traditional benefits lead to perceived organizational support (POS) POS decreases absenteeism and turnover and increases commitment, attendance, performance, and interpersonal interactions
POSITIVE EFFECTS (CONTINUED) Non-traditional benefits also decrease costs Higher insurance costs and lower productivity due to poor health 30,000 employees = $10 million per year Employers stand to lose $3 billion (collectively) each year due to absenteeism related to child care, as just one example
POSITIVE EFFECTS (CONCLUDED) Many competitive employees are looking for the best corporate culture fit Job seekers often view non-traditional benefits as an indication of such, and actively seek them out Fortune Managazine’s Top 100 Companies to Work For has a tool on CNNMoney.com called Perkfinder for just this reason
INDUSTRY LEADERS The idea is that employers want to reduce sources of stress so that employees can focus on work This has led to many creative and innovative benefits which can be customized for industry, company, and individual I used Google as an example in my term paper
INDUSTRY LEADERS Facebook also offers very competitive non- traditional benefits Paid parental leave and baby cash ($4,000) $3,000 a year for child care 21 paid vacation days and unlimited sick days 100% paid health benefit premiums Free breakfast, lunch, and dinner International speakers series Transportation reimbursement On-site laundry service
DESIGNING BENEFITS PACKAGES Employees must value the benefits packages they are offered Benefits should be diverse and match the population they are designed to serve Employees must understand the benefits available, and benefits should be promoted Low participation erodes cost savings Change does not happen overnight
CONCLUSION HR managers must consider total benefits packages during strategic planning These benefit packages pay for themselves Ideally the employee chooses the benefits he or she would like to use Firms can set themselves apart and attract the most competitive workers by offering non-traditional benefits
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Can you think of any other non-traditional benefits that employerscould offer? What would help you minimize stress and maximize organizational commitment? Do you see any other potentialdownsides or caution flags for HR managers to consider when implementing non-traditional benefits?