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February 3, 2020
Brad Jamison

How work perks impact employee longevity

87% of HR leaders have slated employee longevity and retention as a high or critical priority for the next five years.

Are you among them?

Longevity is more important than ever as job seekers and passive candidates become even more selective about where they want to work. As we’ve consistently studied the negative impact of employee turnover, it’s no surprise that we’ve collectively reduced our focus on guerrilla recruitment, in favor of a finessed and invested approach to retention.

Today, we’ll explore the connections between employee longevity and the perks that work. 

Employee longevity & retention is a big picture project 

As you work to cultivate employee loyalty and earn employee longevity, where can you make a positive change? You'll need to consider the big picture.

  • How does your culture impact the way people interact and treat each other?
  • Does your compensation package stack up compared to competitors?
  • How much do you invest in employee growth goals?
  • What kind of work-life balance do you promote?

Employees decide to stay or go based on a variety of factors including individual compatibility, future prospects, and personality. However, it isn't all 1:1. There are many company-wide advances you can make to recruit talent more effortlessly and retain your team year over year. Let's start there.

Bolster employee longevity in six key ways: 

Provide a positive atmosphere

Why: From onboarding onward, employees are more likely to contribute positivity to a culture that already promotes and reciprocates that contribution.

33% of your new hires will quit within 6 months, usually due to perceived signs of a negative or toxic culture. 

How: To combat high churn and spread contagious, balanced positivity workspace-wide, inspire leaders first. New hires will join teams already working collaboratively, equipped to avoid conflict and share the road. Positive perks like affirmations and meditation, pet-friendliness, and other smile-makers will keep your employees happy and with a sense of place.

Show your loyalty

Why: Candidates and employees want to demonstrate loyalty at work, but they want to receive it, too. As our economy has evolved and technology has forced business into transparency, employees now watch for disproportionate loyalty. We see that not all companies want to empower their teams and invest in us, but some do. We’re looking for the ones who say they care, mean it, and show it.

Proof of loyalty to your employees will result in a favor, returned.

How: Get really comfortable with loving your employees the HR-friendly way. Show your commitment to their idea of growth, arrange mentorship and camaraderie from day one, and keep your promises. This demonstrates the kind of loyalty and sense of humanity employees crave. Design perks packages that are flexible, autonomous, and people-first. We can help you get started with that.

Make it a worthy transaction

Why: Think about it: When people are happy in relationships, most will stay. You will have those people who simply can’t commit, but they’re not the vast majority.

Many, many employees want flexibility in tandem with stability, not one for the other. Employees who are getting the perks they want feel comfortable to stay. Nobody wants to constantly fill out new onboarding forms and change insurance providers.

How: The first step to garnering that transactional, “you scratch mine” kind of loyalty is to pay your people at or above market rate. Beyond that, it pays dividends to add on perks that sweeten the deal. You’ll attract more talent at the recruitment phase and keep them longer. 

Meet their needs, their way

Why: Humans are fragile. We need to belong, feel welcome, and experience empathy, even at work. When we perceive that our employers have our best interests in mind, we operate at ease. When work feels easy, your employees will stay and even refer a friend.

Listen to our podcast episode on empathy at work with Emma Brudner.

How: Demonstrate that you see your employees as real, complete people. You know and admire that they have families, homes, hobbies, and goals outside of your walls. Present perk packages that nod to their needs as parents, travelers, homeowners, and hobbyists. 

Keep them motivated

Why: Normally, it’s bad advice to copy your competitors. In this case, though, it can be difficult to compete with other employers who pay more and outperk you. Word gets around—some companies heavily advertise their perks and provisions to get ahead in hiring. If you can’t compete, it will start to feel less motivating to go above and beyond and initiate new projects.

How: While your employees are enthusiastic about their contributions to your company, work is a contract. Perks that offer convenience and support to employees will empower them to work smarter. 

Envision a mutual future

Why: When employees see themselves reflected in the compensation and treatment at work, they warm to the atmosphere. Your employees have either cemented your company in their future plans or... not. A more holistic appreciation for the work they do could further cement their intentions. In an economy where more people are quitting their jobs year over year, this is paramount. 

How: Present perks and benefits that compound over time, and which reward growth, learning, and development.

When you provide perks that mold to your employees, they’ll mold their future to fit your company.

Where we stand on work perks and employee longevity

This year, we’re all aiming for more employee retention and positive culture at work. As you focus on programs to improve employee satisfaction, consider why people go to work. People want to feel validated, challenge themselves, build life stability, and contribute to a purpose. How many of these aims do your current benefits and perks provide? 

Work perks and other efforts to retain your employees aren't just about putting smiles on faces. Today's perks are sophisticated, customized, and high-impact. Stipends for transportation, meals, and wellness, along with cause-based and experiential benefits can change lives, not just moods.

Download our free report on workplace wellness.

Your perks could welcome new employees, connect people, empower the balance between work & life, and save your organization some serious 💲. (We have insights on the cost of turnover here.)

Repackage your compensation to include the things that motivate your people to stay. If you’re not sure, here’s our guide to sourcing employee feedback.

Zestful: recognize and reward your employees—minus the admin work.

What are you waiting for?

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