You don’t need to have the most employee benefits in the world to engage staff and make them happy, but you absolutely do need to make sure that the ones you have are the right ones. Your workforce is constantly changing and your employee benefits program should reflect that.
At RG our workforce of 166 is young, fun, with little disposable income. We don’t pay the highest salaries in the industry and our staff spend most of their money on living costs and going out. We’ve thought really hard about employee benefits that suit them and have adapted these as our company has evolved.
I remember the olden days at RG when at 5pm on a Friday, the whole company would pile into Glenn’s office and help themselves to a G&T from the fully stocked drinks fridge. Back then, there were only 54 people at the company, with an average age of 25, and we spent our working week spread across 2 floors in our London HQ in Notting Hill.
When we sold to Inflexion at the end of 2010, all staff got shares or a big bonus…. For the next couple of years, we worked hard and played harder. Hey, I even won £500 in our staff lottery that paid for my holiday to Ibiza that year.
But we grew up. Don’t get me wrong, we still know how to have a lot of fun. You saw our stand at Employee Benefits Live, right? If not, here’s a peek at the flash mob that took the HR world by storm.
Our workforce started to want more than a boozy Friday night. They started to settle down, buy houses, get married and some even had children. We listened to their pain points and adapted. We introduced a baby and wedding bonus, £500 and £1000, respectively.
We expanded to Sydney, Birmingham, New York, Skopje and Plovdiv and we offered our people the chance to go on secondments overseas for 3, 6, 12 months, plus. Holiday Trading launched and staff could buy an additional 5 days off per year. Perfect for those who needed an extra week of downtime.
In fact, we’re so big on employee benefits that we introduce a new one at almost every one of our Global Business Updates. That’s one per quarter. Our workforce is still young and they need new and exciting things to keep them engaged. Employee benefits don’t need to break the bank, they just need to be appropriate.
Listen to your people. They will come up with great ideas and they’ll thank you for it. They’ll also work harder for you, stay with you for longer, shout about how great you are and they’ll be happy at work. And who doesn’t want a happy workforce?!
What’s next in line for us? Who knows! Someone once suggested salary sacrifice tattoos, do you think that could be a winner? Whichever employee benefits you offer, relevance really is key - make sure what you offer is appropriate to the age and demographic of your workforce.
What employee benefits would you like to see in your business?