Salaries have exploded in the past year. An increasing skills gap has made certified and qualified professionals more in-demand, rampant inflation, and a reduced talent pool have all played a part in this increase in salaries.
But salary isn’t everything. Sure, a high salary is attractive: And it can certainly grab attention in a job advert.
But there are plenty of employee benefits that employees will willingly sacrifice some of their salary for.
And what those most in demand and more important benefits are, changes over time. Indeed and Glassdoor’s 2023 Hiring Workplace Trends Report shows how the most important benefits differ from industry to industry. And that as we have seen a rise in perks and benefits like remote working, we’ve seen a decrease in interest for benefits like free lunches and breakfast.
The 10 Most Important Employee Benefits in 2023
This list draws from many sources, studies, and from our expertise here at Dynamic, to give you an outline of which employee benefits are most important to employees. And while we can give you an idea, the benefits that are most important to your business may differ. So it’s always worth sitting down with your employees and asking them, or sending out anonymous surveys.
But without further ado, here’s 10 of the most important employee benefits to employees themselves.
1. Remote or Hybrid Working
The demand for remote work has only increased in the past few years, especially in industries like IT where opportunities for remote work are more prevalent.
Although there are also other factors that impact how much employees desire remote working or work-from-home opportunities. A study from Forbes Advisor found that work-from-home preference was much higher for those aged 26+, compared to 18 – 25 year olds.
Offering remote or even flexible work does offer a whole host of benefits for employers, not just employees. We’ve explored some of these benefits for employers here.
2. Flexible Hours
Flexibility in working has always been a top priority for employees, and that hasn’t changed in recent years.
A 2017 study from Fractl found that “more flexible hours” was one of the highest valued benefits for job seekers. Similarly the above study from Forbes Advisor in 2022 found that for remote workers in particular, flexible hours was the single most desired benefit.
Which makes sense, when you consider that the majority of those who desire remote work are 26+, where responsibilities like children demand a need for greater flexibility.
3. Training and Development Opportunities: Both Internal and External
Continual training and development is a valuable perk in many industries: But in rapidly evolving and changing industries like Networks, Cloud and Infrastructure, levelling up your skills is essential.
This can come in the form of internal training from senior members within the business, external trainers from industry bodies or consultants, or even financial assistance with earning industry relevant certifications.
For example, in the IT industry, this could be support with earning vendor specific certifications like Cisco’s CCNA or CCNP, that are incredibly valuable to someone’s career.
Meanwhile in digital marketing, it could be a Professional Diploma in Digital Marketing from the Digital Marketing Institute.
4. A Strong Company Culture
While company culture isn’t a strict measurable benefit per say, it can be immensely more important to an employee’s enjoyment of their role. Because despite how much someone is getting paid, if they don’t enjoy their work, they won’t stick around forever.
Similarly, Indeed’s Work Wellbeing 2022 Insights Report found that 90% of people believe that how they feel at work matters. And that their work can have a huge impact on their lives outside work. And company culture plays a huge part in this.
For more information on how company culture can affect recruitment for your business, read here on our guide why company culture is so important, and how you can use it for your businesses recruitment efforts.
5. Medical and Dental Insurance
Better health, dental, and vision insurance was voted as the single most appealing benefit by the 2017 Fractl survey, highlighting just how important it is. And that many would sacrifice a better salary if it gave access to better benefits like these.
And showing that you’re willing to financially support your employees in their potential time of need, is a great way to reduce stress of your employees, thereby improving productivity. Saying nothing of the fact that it shows you care about your employees wellbeing, and goes a long way to foster goodwill with employees.
Other health and dental insurance can be one of the more costly benefits to offer employees. Which is why, in part, it is the most in demand employee benefit. So it’s worth evaluating or perhaps even asking your team internally, if it’s something that is important to them.
6. Employee Wellness Program and Budget
Linked to company culture is the emerging focus on wellness programmes. 46% of people say their expectation around happiness at work has increased in the last year alone, and employee benefits are increasingly reflecting this.
This can take the form of many different benefits including but not limited to:
- On-site massages and yoga.
- On-site gyms or subsidised gym memberships.
- Mental health days.
- Individual wellness budgets.
There are obviously many more than this, but you get the gist.
Employee wellness has a huge impact on all areas of your business. Employee wellness benefits can increase employee retention, saving your business thousands and quickly paying for themselves. As well as increasing work satisfaction and having a strong impact on productivity.
For more information on employee wellness and how it can positively impact your business, read our guide here.
7. Maternity and Paternity Leave
Parental leave is a benefit that is obviously more of a selling point to some, than it is to others. But to those it does interest, it can be hugely important in their decision making when deciding where to move in their career.
Additionally, a strong maternity or paternity leave says great things about your company. It shows that you care about your employees and support their wellbeing and lives outside of the workplace.
Which potential employees recognise, and respond to, even if this particular employee benefit doesn’t apply to them.
8. Extended or Unlimited Holidays – Flexible Working
Extended or even unlimited holidays is an employee benefit that has seen more traction in recent years, as businesses and companies offer more benefits in response to the demand for higher salaries. Although it is much more prevalent in some industries than in others.
This can also expand to include sabbaticals for tenured employees, and opportunities to work-from-anywhere: Where hybrid or remote workers have the opportunity to work from outside their country of residence.
For example, we introduced unlimited holidays here at Dynamic last year. We spoke to company founders John Marks and Adam Law to ask them why, which you can read here.
9. Company or Individual Bonus
Incentives, bonuses, and commissions have been a staple of some industries for years (such as recruitment). But we’ve seen more companies recently introducing bonuses at the company and individual levels.
Not only is this an obvious monetary win for employees, it also acts as an incentive for achievement. While also allowing employees to benefit from the company’s success, and becoming more invested in their role and the business.
10. Support with Travel to the Office
With more companies aiming for a return to the office, we’ve seen companies offer incentives and benefits aimed at supporting employees with this shift. There are plenty of benefits that you can offer that can depend on the location of your business. Let’s have a look at a few of them:
- Travel cards and Season ticket loan.
If your business is located and operates in London for example, offering financial support with public transport travel is a great way to offset the bonuses of remote working.
- Cycle-to-work scheme.
Similarly, offering financial support with cycling to work helps for those in a more city based location. While also helping you with environmental initiatives, and supporting the physical wellbeing of employees.
- Electronic vehicle schemes.
Interest in electronic vehicle buying schemes has also increased in recent years. This helps with environmental initiatives again, and also saves the employee money in the long run. This could also mean installing electric car charging points at your office.
If you’re looking to recruit for your IT business, we would love to help. Our recruitment consultants are experts across Network, Infrastructure, Cloud, IT Sales and Software Development recruitment. Reach out today for a confidential chat and find out what we can do for you and your business.