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4 Workplace Benefits to Consider Offering in 2019

By Maurie Backman - Dec 22, 2018 at 10:33AM

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Small businesses often struggle to match the salaries that their larger competitors are able to offer. As such, you might run into trouble attracting or retaining talent when your current or prospective employees have the option to pursue better offers elsewhere. A good way to make your business more attractive, therefore, is to offer some standout benefits. Here are a few to consider for 2019.

1. A stellar health plan

It's no secret that healthcare is a burdensome expense for working Americans across all ages and income levels. That's why your employees will unequivocally appreciate getting access to the best health insurance plan you're willing to give them. Ideally, that plan should offer a wide range of services, low deductibles (or better yet, no deductibles at all), and premiums that you generously subsidize. The easier you make it for your employees to take care of their health, the less workflow disruptions you'll face when folks put off health issues that subsequently escalate.

A row of smiling professionals at a table


2. A retirement plan

Many smaller operations don't offer retirement plans because 401(k)s -- perhaps the most well-known employer-sponsored plan out there -- can be costly to maintain. But that doesn't mean you don't have options. You might look into opening a SEP IRA or SIMPLE IRA, both of which are designed for small businesses. With both a SEP and SIMPLE IRA, there will be an obligation to fund your employees' accounts to varying degrees, but helping them save for retirement is a good way to hang on to your most valued players.

3. Unlimited vacation

When you're dealing with limited staff, having even a few key members out at the same time could be a daunting prospect, so it stands to reason that you'd be loath to offer any vacation time, let alone unlimited vacation. But actually, there are a few reasons to consider going the latter route. For one thing, you'll get ahead of a growing trend, thereby setting your business apart from others. Secondly, you'll send the message that you value your employees and want to reward them accordingly. Furthermore, offering unlimited vacation indicates that you trust your workers to stay on top of their responsibilities, which is apt to make them feel good about working for you. And if you do indeed trust those employees, you can rest assured that they won't abuse that policy.

4. Flexible scheduling

The majority of employed adults today aren't happy with their work-life balance. A good way to address or avoid that sentiment among your employees is to offer flexible scheduling. That could mean letting employees work from home on occasion if their jobs allow for it, or it could mean letting workers dictate their own hours or compress their workweeks to make more time for family obligations. Being flexible shows your employees that you care about their well-being and respect the fact that they have lives outside of the office. And if you're flexible with your employees, they're more likely to be flexible with you in return, which means that the next time a workplace emergency strikes, you'll get less pushback when folks are asked to stay after hours or put in some time over a weekend.

The benefits you offer your employees could be just the thing that draws them to your business and gets them to stay on board for the long haul. Be sure to consider the above benefits for the upcoming year because, chances are, your team will repay you in hard work and dedication.

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