As a business owner, you are constantly trained to think about the roles and responsibilities you must fulfil. For instance, you must keep your employees safe when they are on your property. However, there are other parts of your business that are not obligatory requirements but are most certainly expected to be present. Perks and benefits both fit into this category. If they are not a significant part of your company model, you will struggle to attract and retain the best employees to your company. Let’s explore what these are and how they might fit into your company culture as well as your brand reputation.
What Is A Benefit?
A benefit is a non-wage compensation that is used to supplement part of an individual’s salary. Benefits are a lot more reliable than perks because they tend to be fixed and unchanging. Most companies use knowledge of their current and previous employees to decide which benefits they should be providing. Many businesses offer benefits, and it is now the case that if you go for a job that does not advertise some sort of benefits with your job offer, this is seen as below standard. You should do some research into when the best time to offer benefits is, and what employees respond best to. However, this could vary from company to company and between different industry sectors, so ensure that when you are conducting research, it is relevant to the industry that you work in.
Examples of Benefits
Some of the most common benefits that are advertised with positions include childcare, health insurance, dental insurance and additional holiday time above the statutory requirements. This is now what many people look for when they are applying for a job, and if this is not offered, they may turn the position down based on this fact alone. People have come to expect these benefits to be included alongside their salary. Some of the more unusual but still known ones given out are gym memberships and stock options. It is important that you know what you are selling here because where one person would love a benefit such as a stock option, this can mean significantly less to someone else.
What Is A Perk?
Basically, a perk can be described as a factor which allows someone to perform more effectively in their position. This is not the same as a circumstantial benefit such as a great commute time or even commute opportunities. Perks will certainly encourage candidates to look at your business in a new light. They might even help potential employees think about choosing your company over the competition. Perks can be described as a form of non-wage compensation. For the business, these perks could be provided for free or cost a substantial portion of your business budget.
Examples of Perks
There are a massive variety of perks that you could provide to your employees. For instance, you might offer them a company car. Now while this does improve their lives and essentially sweeten the deal, it also means they will be able to travel for business obligations without needing to worry about personal costs. Other perks might include snacks supplied in the office or employee retreats. Employee retreats are an interesting example as they can be useful for both the business and the individual employee. Retreats have been shown to be fantastic for team building which will ultimately provide higher levels of productivity. However, they could also be seen by employees as proof that you and your brand cares about more than just the bottom line. Indeed, this could be part of the positive culture within your business which in turn may be classed as a type of perk. This shows just how wide and varied the definition of perks can be. It can be anything that does not fit directly within the employee’s salary. They can be seen as employment supplements. Extras that will give you the edge over competitors and improve job satisfaction at the same time.
What Is the Overall Difference?
To summarise, benefits are meant to enhance a person’s salary, where a perk is more of an added incentive. A perk usually makes the environment that people work in more enjoyable such as snacks in the break room, or a gaming area. Whereas benefits are more substantial and do more to compensate the worker instead of paying actual money. Both are useful in your business, and you need to make sure that you are conducting thorough research as to what is going to work well in your business. You need to be offering both and this is something that many employers miss. Some will only offer benefits and no perks and whilst others do the opposite. To run a successful company, both of these are going to be necessary.
How Do They Help Your Company?
Think about it this way: You have offered your employees health coverage, dental coverage and everything else that you can think of. But the work environment is boring, dull and overall quite depressing. Even though you are offering your employees benefits, the level of productivity is going to take a dive without perks. As the saying has always gone, happy employees are hard-working employees, and this is where perks come in. If you offer your team little extras, they are more likely to be happy, leading to higher productivity and efficiency levels for your business. Imagine that you have just gone and bought a table. The table mats and cloth are the perks. Essentially, by providing perks, you will be adding to your company culture. This is one of the main requirements for the top, highly qualified candidates on the job market today. This is how you get the innovators and the individuals who can offer real growth.
Like we talked about above, offering benefits is now the norm when it comes to advertising a job. Without them, people are going to go and find another company who is willing to offer them what you fail to. As such, without benefits you are going to lose the employees that you do have, and hiring others isn’t going to be an easy task. It makes people feel more secure in their job, knowing they are going to be protected should things take a turn for the worse. A perk isn’t going to do anyone any good if an employee breaks their leg, but the health insurance offered by the company will.
We hope from this you understand the differences between these two parts of your business model and why both are absolutely vital.