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Bean bags and weekly pizza parties may be a great addition to your office, but knowing what benefits mean the most to your employees is essential to ensuring you’re retaining your top talent. There can often be a disconnect between what employees see as valuable and what recruiters think of as attractive perks.  

Ensuring you’re doing your research and putting together a well thought out benefits package doesn’t just mean you’re ensuring your employees are happy, it can also make the difference between a candidate joining your company or choosing to find an alternate job. Here’s how to figure out what to invest in:

What matters to employees 

It’s incredibly important to keep open lines of communication between your HR department and your employees, so that you’re able to gain and implement actionable feedback. Depending on the size of your company and the work your employees carry out, expectations surrounding useful and functional benefits may differ.  

What’s more, feedback from your employees can also help give you a good idea of what isn’t working – if their request for better equipped facilities in the offices leads to the purchase of one bean bag, for instance, their frustration may be justifiable.  

Looking into research can be another helpful way to gain insight 

Generally speaking, and unsurprisingly, employees value a company that is invested in their welfare. This includes physical health, and so health insurance or discounted gym memberships may come under here, as well as external development opportunities, such as training programmes, or flexibility in terms of work location or timings.  

Organisations such as Netflix and LinkedIn have really changed the way companies think and structure their benefits package – for example, Netlflix includes a stock option plan, unlimited vacation time, and free lunch for all their employees. 

In one research survey taken by organisation Fractl, health insurance, flexibility and vacation timings were the most sought after perks candidates considered before deciding whether to sign on to a contract. Assistance with tuition fees or student loans and support for parents (including paid leave and free daycare) followed closely after.  

Finally, fun added incentives never hurt when it comes to employee engagement. This includes ensuring team cohesion through planned events, free food, and other perks like a good coffee machine (which those of us at team LEAP can’t do without).  

Check in every couple of months and adapt accordingly  

Once you’ve picked which benefits you want to implement at work, make sure to check in and see that these are still working for your employees. Different stages of a business can demand different things – for instance, employees of a start-up are very likely to want training programmes, while a bigger business organisation may want to focus on team-building. Taking the time to plan and structure your benefits package will really help keep your employees happy, ensuring your output remains as productive as possible.

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