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Tips for Designing a Benefits Program for Your Employees in 5 Simple Steps

Employee benefits management

April 15 2020 - Do you want to create an employee benefits program that suits your business' unique needs?

Your business needs to have a good employee benefits program. This program will either make or break your employees' decision to work for you. Over 50% of US workers feel dissatisfied with their jobs.

With that said, you can't put all your resources into employee benefits management. There are smarter ways to keep qualified employees in your company. You need a strategic benefits strategy that will benefit you and your employees.

In this guide, we'll give you the top tips for designing an employee benefits program that works best. This guide will also apply to how you re-design a benefits program that's not working as well as you hoped.

1. Keep Your Budget and Goals in Mind

Before you create an employee benefits plan, you need to have a reason behind it. The primary goal of an employee benefits program is to hold onto qualified employees. Some companies only aim to offer obligatory benefits for employees.

You also need to know your budget for your benefits program. Defining your goals and your budget will help you focus on the task of designing a good benefits program.

Your goals and budget for an employee benefits program need to be realistic as well.

Nike can afford to keep a running trail while Google's campus features nap pods. Can your business stand toe-to-toe with the benefits program of these companies? Most small and medium-sized businesses can't compete against these benefits.

However, you must remember that there are perks bigger companies can't offer. For example, bigger companies may have all the benefits of a fun zone or a fitness room. However, they focus less on health insurance.

One of your goals must be to create a benefits program that is unique to your company. Expect that your competition already provides the typical requirements. What can you offer the employees in your company that'll give you an edge in the labor market?

2. Know the Obligatory Employee Benefits

This knowledge is important if it's your first time managing employee benefits. Your business needs to follow the requirements from federal, state, and local laws. These benefits or offers must include:

  • Social Security
  • Unemployment insurance
  • Workers' compensation
  • Leaves of absence
  • Disability insurance

Disability insurances follow state-specific laws. In most states, disability insurance is optional. In California, Hawaii, New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico, and Rhode Island, you need to provide disability insurance.

Workers' compensation is an obligation for employers with five or more personnel. It protects a small business if an employee gets sick or injured on the job. This insurance covers medical bills, lost wages, and rehabilitation expenses of the employee.

If you don't have workers' compensation insurance, you're likely to pay the expenses from your pocket. In some states, workers' compensation is applicable only in certain situations. Find out if your state needs you to get workers' compensation at all times or on specific conditions.

If you're unsure about these things, check the federal laws as well as the state and local laws that apply to your business's location.

3. Add Other Benefits Your Employees Need

You already know what benefits your employees will expect from you. Now, it's time to think about what else you can offer them that they'll appreciate. What makes your business stand out from other companies that offer 'better' benefits?

First, you need to look at what your employees do often at work. If your employees spend most of their time seated, offer a zone where they can stretch their legs. If you want to offer food benefits, propose theme lunch days per month or daily free lunch.

You can also encourage teamwork in your employees by adding games in the break room. Once a month, let them test their skills in competitions between departments or teams. The games can be to complete a jigsaw puzzle or a Ping-Pong competition.

The benefits they get when they win or join include discount coupons, free tickets, and passes. Tip: offer Starbucks coupons because everybody needs coffee.

You want to make sure the benefits you provide will resonate with your workforce.

For example, those without pets won't appreciate pet insurance. Instead, try to offer benefits that'll address common employee issues. For example, help care for aging parents by providing eldercare benefits.

4. Communicate the Benefits Plan to Your Employees

It's not enough to have good employee benefits program. You also need a good approach to employee benefits management. This includes communicating the big picture with your employees.

You want all your employees to understand and appreciate the benefits you're offering. One way to do this is to give each employee an annual statement of total compensation. This will show each of them all their wages.

It must also include the benefits in the program translated into a dollar amount. This way, they know how much their benefits cost. It'll also encourage them to take advantage of these benefits.

5. Learn Proper Employee Benefits Management and Effectiveness Evaluation

Are you here to re-design an employee benefits program? One reason you're likely re-designing it is that the original design doesn't work as well as you'd hope. This is a good thing because it means you're doing a follow-up on the program's success.

It's not enough to design a benefits program for your workforce. You also need to know if it works. Otherwise, it's useless to have created one.

Use data to find out if it's helping your employees. Check the effectiveness of your benefits program with surveys. You must also find out if your program is costing you more than you need to spend.

Create a Motivating Employee Benefits Program

Your benefits program needs to protect your employees. An ideal employee benefits program will do more than provide the requirements. It attracts those who have the skills you need, and it'll entice those employees to stay in your company.

That's it for our 5 tips on designing an employee benefits plan. We hope this guide helps you create a unique employee benefits plan. If you want to read more on employee benefits management, check out our other guides.



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