Crafting the right benefits packages is good for business
Every HFA member-retailer wants its employees to feel appreciated and
valued. They also want to be able to attract and retain the best available
talent. These goals cannot be achieved without a competitive comprehensive
benefits package. That’s because although competitive pay is an essential
element of any compensation program, benefits packages are of equal or
greater importance for many workers. In fact, they are a key differentiator
for just about every potential and current employee.
Health coverage and accessibility to care were the number one concern during
COVID for people across the nation.
This was especially true for front-line retail employees who did not have
the option of working remotely. Workers wanted to feel cared for and know
that their income and jobs were protected if they or their loved ones were
to get sick. These issues continue to remain top of mind.
A well thought out employee benefits package is one of the best ways for a
home furnishings retailer to demonstrate its commitment to the health and
well-being of its workforce. Great benefit plans lead to higher morale,
higher levels of employee engagement, lower attrition rates, and better
attendance. And, when generous enough, they give talent acquisition teams a
necessary edge in today’s tight job market.
Many candidates will decline an offer if they have to change health-care
relationships; it is THAT important to them. So, consider offering various
types of coverage like Preferred Provider Organizations (PPO) and Health
Maintenance Organizations (HMO) with different networks. Other options such
as Health Savings Accounts (HSA) or Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) allow
workers to set aside pre-tax dollars for out-of-pocket expenses, co-pays,
deductibles and prescriptions. These accounts can be used for other
health-related expenses as well, like dental work, glasses or contacts, and
braces. Specialty FSAs allow for the use of pre-tax dollars for dependent
care and commuter/public transportation expenses. All have some limitations
and drawbacks, so work with your benefits broker to make the right decisions
for your organization.
The pandemic placed a spotlight on mental health and well-being. Employees
don’t want to feel stigmatized, should they need help coping with difficult
times. Consider offering a wellness plan that includes an Employee
Assistance Plan (EAP) providing mental health-care support to employees.
Usually, an EAP includes free and confidential access to local mental-health
professionals who can support employees through life’s challenges.
Providing options for employees to take time off from work for planned or
unexpected reasons is a safety net that shows you appreciate them and the
work they do. The value of having the ability to continue to support
themselves and their families, should a family emergency arise cannot be
overestimated. Time off accrual rates should increase throughout an
employee’s tenure and higher-level employees should accumulate at a higher
rate than those who are entry-level, which is especially important for
Retirement planning is another key element of a comprehensive benefits
package. Most workers today do not believe that Social Security is
sustainable, nor that it will it provide adequate support for their
retirement years. Designing a retirement plan that includes a match is an
excellent retention tool.
Rewarding & Recognizing
There are many other ways to reward and recognize employees, such as:
Volunteer programs that provide paid hours to volunteer in the
communities you serve.
- Leadership development programs.
On-site kitchen facilities for workers to store and enjoy meals.
- Business casual or a relaxed dress code.
The bottom line is that workers want to be proud of the company they work
for, know they are cared for and feel valued. There is no better way to do
this than having a benefits package incorporating health care, time off, and
other perks. And, don’t forget to offer discounts to your employees on the
products and services you provide. Grown-ups love new furniture and
Stop by space B1050 during Las Vegas Market to learn about HFA Healthcare
Solutions, now offering sole proprietor coverage. Visit
for details and a free quote.