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Job Benefits, and the changing nature of work perks.

By May 13, 2022No Comments

Like almost every other facet of modern work, the humble “work perk” has gone through something of a pandemic-shaped reset since 2019.

But rest assured, benefits still matter. In fact, they might matter more than ever in such a competitive candidate-led recruitment market.

  • 83% of HR leaders believe they’ll need to adapt what they offer employees in order to attract the best talent in a post-pandemic world”.
  • 60% of candidates say that benefits and perks are a major factor when considering a job offer”.

In the digital age the power of benefits to draw talent, attract people and retain staff is all-powerful. But knowing how to adapt an existing benefits package, or build a new one from scratch, needs to be strategised. 

Work benefits are intimately tied to your working culture, and the power of the “culture fit” within the recruitment and retention cycle cannot be overstated. 

So whether you’re purchasing an off-the-shelf package of work perks from companies such as PerkBox, Reward Gateway or Fond, or building a more bespoke offering from scratch, your benefits offer has to be context-led, personal, relevant to your audience, sustainable, and deliverable. 

Tech and Benefit Visibility.

It’s worth diving a little deeper into tech, especially considering the importance of curated digital platforms to recruitment and the overall candidate and employee experience (CX/EX).

From discussions with partners, and in our position as a tech company straddling the entire recruitment space, we’ve seen how impactful good – and bad – tech implementations can be. We’ve heard stories of candidates rejecting companies based on poor ATS UX, or simply not having the tools or visibility on company culture and perks to decide on whether or not to join a new employer.

The delivery of workplace benefits and perks – and the communication and visibility of those perks – will go a long way in engaging new talent, and creating game-changing CX.

Hence the emphasis on choosing the right recruitment CRM or ATS – make sure your chosen platform can integrate and customise to meet CX demand and provide the best experience in your field!

Benefits trends.

Your benefits package also has to be trend-led. The current recruitment and talent acquisition landscape is vicious, but only for those who don’t listen to their people – modern recruitment cultures such as a company’s commitment to ESG, sustainability, and diversity are not only considered good business ethics but absolutely essential to talent acquisition and long term recruitment strategy. 

In this regard, benefits need to be tangible – they need to be visible and meaningful, impactful to both employee and community, and sustainable. As mentioned above, they also need to be accessible, and delivered through both innovative tech platforms which are tied into performance management and in-person experiences and rewards. 

So how should employers market their new, future proof work perk packages? 

  • Consider industry best practice: do your research and understand how your audience has changed.
  • Consider budget: budget consistently.
  • Consider incentives and needs: open your arms to the changing demands of candidates. 

Do your research and understand how your audience has changed.

Our view is simple – some perks are desirable no matter the industry, but you still have to know your audience before you build a perk strategy that will turn heads.  

The great resignation, and the lasting effects of millions of people exiting industries, should be your guide when building a sector-specific benefits package. We’re not saying exclusively base benefits around battling pandemic-era problems, but use them as baseline coordinates.

As we mentioned in the introduction, benefits are more than a series of work-related perks, discounts, or lifestyle additions – they represent a holistic, cultural standpoint, like a lighthouse in the career dark. They embody your working culture, what you stand for, and what your employee’s labour means.

So make sure you seek as much feedback on your employees and prospective employees as possible and build a benefits package that gives them what they now want in the post-pandemic era.

Budget consistently.

There are fairly industry-standard budgetary structures you could deploy to build a benefits package, such as Zero-based budgeting (prioritising employee benefits based on employee wants), incremental budgeting (analysing the previous spend and adjusting YoY), and factoring in certain budgeting ethoses such as cost-neutral benefits.

There are also mandatory “benefits” that you are legally entitled to factor into contracts, such as pension contributions and minimum leave/holiday. This in effect creates tiers of benefit spending, and depending on the size of your company and specific employee demands, can have a huge impact on your budgeting. 

Caboodle advises building a benefit structure around the following elements:

  • Number of employees (and how this is projected to grow or decrease)
  • Projected employee benefits uptake
  • Projected changes in retention due to employee benefits
  • Any future legislation changes which may affect the cost
  • Any bespoke requirements you might have

And around the following types of benefits:

  • Health and wellbeing benefits
  • Financial wellbeing benefits
  • Lifestyle benefits and employee discounts
  • Salary sacrifice benefits
  • Commuting and travel benefits

Open your arms to the changing demands of candidates. 

Once you’ve made a list of sector-specific perks, fold them into a complete benefits package that includes country-wide benefits demands. 

For example:

  • “67% of employees said that paid sick leave matters most to them. Next on the list were flexible working hours at 57%, and pension contribution matching at 46%” – source
  • “(A) Perkbox survey also looked at which perks would make employees feel happier in their jobs, with employee discounts again coming out on top (52%)” – source.
  • “According to the Harvard Business Review, private health insurance is high on the list. 88% of people surveyed said that this would be a factor when considering a job offer” – source

What are the key takeaways here? Welfare, future-proofing and money management are key drivers of attractive employment opportunities. 

Summary

You will never, ever, lose face if you change benefits packages to meet the needs of your people. 

Creating a benefits package that meets the demands of the modern workforce is a show of commitment to looking after your people, your community and your environment – and there is no greater magnet for talent than that.

A quick, responsive process is what you need to attract and engage the best talent.

At Rectec we help organisations to find the best Applicant Tracking System or best Recruitment CRM to suit your needs, accompanied by our unique complementary technology marketplace, to help you build the perfect recruitment tech stack for your business.

You can click here to register for Rectec Compare – and best of all, it’s completely free of charge.