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The Best Way to Provide Custom, Lifestyle Employee Benefits

Cassandra Rose, SPHR, SHRM-SCP
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An increas­ing num­ber of exec­u­tives are active­ly search­ing for mean­ing­ful ways to show their employ­ees that they’re val­ued, and lifestyle ben­e­fits are prov­ing to be an excel­lent way to do just that.

Lifestyle ben­e­fits aren’t the ben­e­fits offered in stan­dard ben­e­fits pack­ages. How­ev­er, they are quick­ly becom­ing the stan­dard for attract­ing and retain­ing employ­ees. So, what are lifestyle ben­e­fits? How do they com­pare to tra­di­tion­al benefits?

What Are Lifestyle Benefits?

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The world of employ­ee ben­e­fits can get a bit con­vo­lut­ed, but essen­tial­ly, there are three types of ben­e­fits a com­pa­ny can offer.

Required Benefits

Required ben­e­fits are any ben­e­fits required by law, like Medicare, Social Secu­ri­ty, Unem­ploy­ment Insur­ance, and Work­ers’ Compensation.

Necessary Benefits

Nec­es­sary ben­e­fits are any ben­e­fits that an employ­ee needs, whether or not their orga­ni­za­tion offers them. In oth­er words, if the employ­er doesn’t pro­vide these ben­e­fits, the employ­ee will have to pur­chase them on their own dime. These ben­e­fits include health insur­ance, den­tal insur­ance, vision insur­ance, dis­abil­i­ty insur­ance, life insur­ance, and retire­ment options. These are often non-nego­tiable ben­e­fits for high­ly skilled, sought-after employees.

Lifestyle Benefits

Lifestyle ben­e­fits aren’t nec­es­sar­i­ly essen­tial, but they improve an employee’s per­son­al, emo­tion­al or finan­cial well-being. In addi­tion, they’re often ben­e­fits they can use in their lives today. These ben­e­fits include things like gym mem­ber­ships, vir­tu­al men­tal health sup­port, sub­scrip­tion ser­vices, gro­cery deliv­ery, child­care, edu­ca­tion ser­vices, and more.

In short, lifestyle ben­e­fits are ben­e­fits that improve an employee’s life in some way. While required and nec­es­sary ben­e­fits are an essen­tial part of the equa­tion, lifestyle ben­e­fits are becom­ing cru­cial to attract­ing and retain­ing top talent.

  • 83% of mil­len­ni­als will change jobs in favor of more com­pre­hen­sive lifestyle benefits.
  • 70% of all employ­ees agree that lifestyle ben­e­fits are crit­i­cal when con­sid­er­ing a new job offer.
  • 68% of employ­ees say that lifestyle ben­e­fits are just as sig­nif­i­cant as nec­es­sary ben­e­fits, like health insurance.

Con­sid­er­ing these sta­tis­tics, it’s evi­dent why lifestyle ben­e­fits are hav­ing such an influ­ence on the ever-evolv­ing world of employ­ee ben­e­fits. In fact, some lifestyle ben­e­fits have rede­fined the norm, alter­ing what employ­ees expect from the orga­ni­za­tions they call home. So, how does a com­pa­ny choose which lifestyle ben­e­fits are right for them?

Embracing Lifestyle Benefits

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For many com­pa­nies, decid­ing to offer lifestyle employ­ee ben­e­fits isn’t the chal­leng­ing part: Deter­min­ing which lifestyle ben­e­fits to offer is.

If a com­pa­ny has a small team with sim­i­lar val­ues, choos­ing lifestyle ben­e­fits can be rel­a­tive­ly straight­for­ward. On the oth­er hand, if a com­pa­ny has dozens of peo­ple who vary in age, back­ground, inter­ests, and cul­ture (ya know, like most com­pa­nies), find­ing ben­e­fits equal­ly impact­ful to all of them can be almost impossible.

Once remote employ­ees are added to the mix, it becomes even more com­pli­cat­ed. More than half of employ­ers report that they’re unsure how to sup­port flex­i­ble employ­ees. Remote teams can be under­stand­ably dif­fi­cult to reach since their lives and per­son­al­i­ties are hid­den behind a screen. This makes pro­vid­ing appro­pri­ate and com­pre­hen­sive lifestyle ben­e­fits even more challenging.

Diverse orga­ni­za­tions require diverse solu­tions. Instead of offer­ing blan­ket lifestyle ben­e­fits that may or may not meet the needs of every indi­vid­ual, com­pa­nies need to think out­side of the box.

Some solu­tions for cre­at­ing a lifestyle ben­e­fits pack­age that works include:

  • Sur­veys — Com­pa­nies can com­plete sur­veys ask­ing employ­ees what ben­e­fits they’d like to have. The best way to see what employ­ees want is sim­ply to ask them.
  • Tri­al-and-Error — While not a glam­orous option, try­ing new lifestyle ben­e­fits offer­ings every quar­ter is a ter­rif­ic way to gauge inter­est and weed out ben­e­fits that don’t work.
  • Research the Com­pe­ti­tion — For some ideas, com­pa­nies can take a peek at what lifestyle ben­e­fits their com­peti­tors offer. Addi­tion­al­ly, busi­ness­es can look into ben­e­fits pack­ages of com­pa­nies that have a great rep­u­ta­tion for attract­ing and retain­ing top talent.
  • Cus­tomized Lifestyle Ben­e­fits — Com­pa­nies can also let their employ­ees choose the ben­e­fits they’d like on an indi­vid­ual lev­el. They can do this by offer­ing mul­ti­ple options and let­ting the employ­ees build their own ben­e­fits pack­ages. Alter­na­tive­ly, they can con­sid­er uti­liz­ing a lifestyle ben­e­fits plat­form like Fringe, which spe­cial­izes in sim­pli­fy­ing per­son­al­ized lifestyle benefits.

Getting Started with Lifestyle Benefits

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Ulti­mate­ly, lifestyle ben­e­fits are here to stay. They not only show employ­ees that they’re val­ued, but they also improve com­pa­ny cul­ture and boost recruit­ment efforts while increas­ing job sat­is­fac­tion. It’s no won­der why lifestyle ben­e­fits are such a sta­ple at top com­pa­nies like Google, Star­bucks, Deloitte, Sales­force, and more.

How­ev­er, most com­pa­nies don’t have Google bud­gets, mak­ing get­ting start­ed with lifestyle ben­e­fits an uphill bat­tle. That’s where Fringe can help.

To pro­vide cus­tom, lifestyle employ­ee ben­e­fits and show well-deserved peo­ple how much they mat­ter, Fringe’s easy-to-use, cus­tom ben­e­fits plat­form enables com­pa­nies to offer per­son­al­ized ben­e­fits to match and sup­port the lifestyles of every employ­ee — with­out need­ing an unlim­it­ed bud­get to do it.

Fringe’s all-in-one plat­form sim­pli­fies per­son­al­ized lifestyle ben­e­fits and makes them acces­si­ble for com­pa­nies across the coun­try. Talk to our team to sched­ule a free demo!

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