Voluntary and Non-Traditional Benefits Help Small Employers Compete for Talent

Jan 28, 2019
| Michael Altiero
Voluntary Benefits Help Small Businesses Compete for Talent

Employers today face growing difficulties with recruiting and retaining employees as the job market continues to favor workers.

This trend has caused companies to alter their strategies for attracting job candidates while simultaneously improving the happiness of current employees.

While this might be a more manageable project for larger employers, small businesses may feel overwhelmed due to a lack of resources. However, there’s one solution that small employers should explore that can help improve retention and recruiting – adding voluntary and non-traditional benefits.

In recent years, voluntary benefits have grown in importance for employees who now expect these perks from current and potential employers. Let’s explore why these benefits are so valuable, which voluntary benefits are becoming popular, and how small businesses can offer them to their workforce.

Voluntary Benefits Are Becoming Must-Have Additions to Modern Offerings

Not too long ago, voluntary benefits were seen as “nice-to-have” aspects of a company’s plan and often associated with larger employers.

However, as unemployment has dropped and the job market has shifted to favor candidates, employers large and small have had to adapt to the changing times. Adding or improving voluntary benefits is one way to do just that.

Last year, a study revealed just how important voluntary benefits are to employees today and the value they bring to employers.

And while this survey was taken mostly by larger employers, voluntary benefit adoption amongst small employers is on the rise, too.

Which Voluntary Benefits are Growing in Popularity?

When small employers look to add voluntary benefits, it’s important to know which ones are growing in demand. This is why continuous improvement is critical to any benefit plan, regardless of company size.

Some of the most popular voluntary benefits that employers can adopt and offer include:
  • Pet insurance
  • Legal assistance
  • Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)
  • Identity theft protection
  • Employee wellness programs
  • Tuition assistance
  • Education programs
  • Accident and illness plans
  • Home, auto, and renter’s insurance
  • Financial planning
  • Preventative medical services

These are just a few possibilities smaller employers can explore when looking to craft their voluntary benefit offerings.

It’s important to keep in mind that with all benefits, including voluntary, employers need to keep their company culture in mind when looking to enhance their offerings. The best benefit plans tend to match their perks to the wants and needs of their workforce.

How can Small Employers Offer Voluntary Benefits?

Small employers might think that adding voluntary benefits would be a time-consuming and expensive process, but that doesn’t have to be the case. Working with a benefits broker who offers a wide-variety of voluntary and non-traditional benefits is a great first step to take.

Small business owners can also look to benefits outsourcing solutions to help improve not just voluntary perks, but also traditional benefits.

Professional employer organizations (PEOs) can be the perfect partnership for small businesses (or brokers) who want to gain access to Fortune-500 level benefits.

Not only can PEOs help improve employee benefits, but they also help to streamline and simplify all-areas of HR. Payroll, taxes, HR administration, risk management, and HR compliance are just a few examples of the services offered by a PEO.

Voluntary Benefits Help Small Employers Compete for Talent

Employers are struggling to retain and attract talent in an extremely competitive market. Smaller employers in particular can face increased difficulties, especially when going up against larger organizations for the same candidates.

However, adding to and enhancing benefit plans with voluntary and non-traditional perks is a great way to overcome these challenges.

By exploring solutions (such as a PEO) and working with their brokers, small business leaders can make their benefit offerings attractive to both current and potential employees, and ultimately overcome their recruiting and retention challenges!

Want to learn more about PEOs? Check out our eBook, How Well Do You Know PEO? This eBook provides an overview of the PEO industry as well as helpful information for brokers and employers!

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