This is a guest post by Carol Wilson.
Sure, your company may provide you with free coffee and the opportunity to work from home once a month, but there are many more things it could do to bring more balance to your life and reward you for your hard work.
There are some companies out there who really know the meaning of employee appreciation and have benefit programs that go beyond the traditional health care insurance plan.
Here are two examples of benefit programs that other business organizations should take note of.
This software firm has been on several “top company” lists many times. With over 400 offices across the country and more than 13,000 employees, SAS works with business owners across all industries to come up with innovative software solutions. Chief Executive Officer, Jim Goodnight, calls SAS employees “creative capital,” saying they are the reason the company is succeeds.
But the company is able to acquire and keep experienced employees by offering a wide variety of health and lifestyle-related benefits. Realizing how difficult it can be to balance work life and home life, SAS provides free assistance for finding resources related to adoption, eldercare, mental health counseling, financial planning, separation and divorce. They also provide high-quality, on-site child care for employees with younger children, as well as a summer camp for kids.
For employees, the company has a recreation and fitness center at the worldwide headquarters in Cary, North Carolina. For regional employees, they offer discount opportunities at local health clubs. At the offices in Cary, North Carolina and Austin, Texas, the company provides an on-site health care provider to provide comprehensive health care services, including prescription refills.
In Cary, North Carolina, employees can receive a massage at the recreation center, get their car detailed and get a manicure…all at the headquarters. The office also houses several cafes that serve fresh, healthy meals.
This outdoor gear company also appears on “top company” lists every year. REI operates as a consumer cooperative, and is the largest consumer co-op in the United States. The company was first started by 23 mountain climbing friends who wanted to provide other adventurers with quality outdoor equipment and clothing.
The company provides health care benefits for all customers, including part-time employees, and a retirement plan that doesn’t require individual contributions. Employees also receive a 50-75% discount on all full-price REI branded apparel and equipment, as well as free equipment rental for activities like kayaking or skiing.
As if that isn’t enough to write home about, the company also gives an annual gift of REI gear to every employee and provides a four-week sabbatical for employees who have been with the company for 15 years (after that, they can take another one every five years).
REI also has a Challenge Grant program that gives up to $300 worth of gear to employees who participate in a challenging outdoor adventure. Employees are also encouraged to enjoy outdoor activity on a regular basis, when not at work.
Businesses should be open to integrating some of these ideas into their benefit packages, because they help increase productivity by creating a happier, healthier workforce.
Carol Wilson prides herself in knowing the latest info on the top business insurance companies to share with her readers. She also enjoys writing about other business-related topics such as entrepreneurship, small businesses and social media marketing. She encourages your feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.