When it comes to the benefits of company perks, the recipe is usually simple. If a company has great benefits, employee engagement will rise and in turn, so will revenue. But if businesses do not offer the proper employee benefits, employee engagement can decrease resulting in lost productivity. The latter of these two scenarios ultimately costs U.S. companies $450-$550 billion annually, according to Gallup. With research to back up their initiatives, many businesses are looking to implement the right benefits to help increase company morale and, their bottom lines.
According to The Balance Careers there are three critical elements of sustainable engagement when it comes to employee benefits. These include, engagement, enablement, and energy. Companies want to make sure they are increasing the energy levels of workers and makes sure they are bought into the company’s vision. Through enablement, they want to create an environment where employees work to their full potential. By implementing an energy based benefit, businesses want to help develop a corporate culture while reducing stress and promoting a more stable work life balance. While keeping this in mind, here are some examples of company perks that help drive employee engagement.
1. Training and Personal Professional Development
Everyone in the working world, no matter what field, is looking to get ahead. Working towards that next promotion or next opportunity to show their skills. It can be extremely unmotivating for employees at companies who don’t give them the means to better themselves. According to Better Buys, “7 out of 10 people say that professional development opportunities affect their decision to stay at a company”. Not to mention, they report that employees who have those professional development opportunities are 15% more engaged in their jobs.
To help implement this, companies can provide employees with a clear and distinct growth path in the company. Other ideas would be to provide shadowing opportunities or formal training for those looking to advance in their field. This will help reduce the feeling of frustration as if there is lack of growth and in turn help them to work better and more efficiently.
An example of a company that is focused on helping their employees is Amazon. As Monster reports, they offer an extensive month long training program before they hire. They even prepay 95% of tuition for employees who take classes in their in-demand fields. Amazon’s corporate communications manager Teal Pennebaker, says that they want their employees to be owners from the first day they start. They want them to take control of the products they sell and be passionate about their work. This helps employees to not only work their best, but also feel like they contribute to the company on a more personal level.
2. Flexible and Remote Working Schedules
According to Zenefits, 78% of employees reported that their flexible work arrangements allowed them to be more productive when working. No one works in the same way or is at their best at the same time. Some workers are more productive in the morning and some are the most productive late at night. Allowing employees to be able to work when it’s best for them will allow them to determine their best working schedule based on when they are most productive.
Also remote working is something that so many companies are offering these days. Global Workplace Analytics reports 4.3 million employees, which is 3.2% of the workforce, now work from home at least half the time. A Stanford Study showed that remote working actually boosts productivity. While keeping working options flexible and trusting their employees to work their best, companies are sure to find people more productive than ever.
Flexible work schedules can often be easy to abuse, but companies like General Electric have seen success with giving their employees more freedom in their schedules. According to Fairy God Boss, the company understands that there are circumstances where personal needs need to come first at times. By allowing their employees benefits such as, working part-time, compressing their workweek, or a remote work arrangement, they find that their employees work more efficiently and have a better work/life balance.
3. Employee Feedback
The best way to make employees happy is simply to just ask them what they need. By providing ways for workers to give their feedback, companies will be able to know what employee needs they need to attend to. This is something that helps employees remain positive and feeling cared for. If they are able to provide their feedback to their employer, the employer will know to offer perks employees want and boost company morale. A few different mediums to offer this feedback would be through AMAs (Ask Me Anything) or anonymous surveys. By having brainstorms in a group setting you are likely to hear from those who are more confident. Therefore, in order to hear the real truth from the whole company, anonymous surveys are the best way to get as much information as possible.
There are a few ways to accomplish this. One way is to do this face-to-face or via video chat, however this can take a long time to speak with every employee. This is a good idea for more smaller to mid-sized organizations. As mentioned digital surveys, whether they be anonymous or not, are a great way to hear everyone’s opinions without having to schedule one-on-one time.
No matter what benefits a company offers, the idea is to make sure that employees are happy in their jobs. Incentives are used to get employees motivated and excited to work again. The most important thing is that companies are focusing on what makes their employees happy. Sometimes, there is no “quick fix” when it comes to making employees happy and working to their full potential. However, by implementing a few of these benefits, companies will definitely be heading in the right direction.
How about you? What other company perks do you feel drives employee engagement? Let us know in the comments!
About the Author
Amanda Peterson is a contributor to the site Enlightened Digital and a software engineer from New York City. Her aim is to explore how changes in technology affect personal business growth and professional development, especially for women.