How To Build A Custom Benefits Strategy For Your Remote Teams
Remote teams face challenges that can be hard to surmount.
Retaining remote teams is tough because of the disconnect between them and their management team, and introducing benefits can ease the process. Benefits give employees a reason to stick around — tangible rewards satisfy them.
However, it isn’t easy to build an employee benefits strategy. You could end up doing it in a haphazard way that doesn't meet the needs of your remote employees.
In this article, we share 5 easy steps you can apply to build a custom benefits strategy for your remote teams.
What Are The Top Benefits You Can Offer To A Remote Team?
1. Flexible schedule.
Having a flexible schedule can allow employees to work at a convenient and productive pace. This can reduce stress and improve overall job satisfaction, giving employees more control over their work-life balance. 1.8x employees are more likely to stay if they are offered flexibility and work-life balance.
For example, a remote employee with young children at home may prefer to work during the evening hours after their kids have gone to bed. Or, an employee who is an early riser may prefer to work in the morning before starting their day. By letting employees work during hours that suit their schedules, you can ensure they are productive and focused.
In addition, a flexible schedule can also foster a sense of trust and autonomy within your team. Allowing employees to choose their work hours shows them you trust them to manage their time and finish their work. This helps build a stronger team dynamic, as employees feel more empowered and valued.
Neal Taparia, who runs cribbage-online, suggests having a semi flexible schedule. “We ask that our employees simultaneously be open for certain pockets of the day to facilitate collaboration and communication. We give them control and flexibility of their hours the rest of the day.”
2. Paid time off
Paid time off is a traditional employee benefit that allows employees to take time off from work for vacation, personal time, or to attend to personal obligations.
This benefit can be valuable for remote teams, as it allows team members to take breaks from work and recharge, improving their overall productivity and job satisfaction.
It can also foster a better work-life balance, allowing employees to spend more time with their families and engage in activities outside of work that improve their overall well-being.
3. Statutory benefits
Country-specific statutory benefits are employee benefits required by law in a particular country. These benefits include the minimum wage, parental leave, and healthcare.
For remote teams operating across countries, it's important to understand and provide these benefits to employees based on the country where they are located. Failure to do so can have legal consequences for the company.
Providing country-specific statutory benefits can also ensure remote team members are treated fairly and have access to the same protections and benefits as employees who work in a physical office.
4. Supplemental benefits
Remote teams, particularly tech teams, often offer supplemental benefits besides traditional benefits like paid time off and healthcare.
These benefits include gym memberships, overtime, and flexible schedules, and even life insurance. These benefits can be precious for remote teams, as they improve the overall work experience and job satisfaction of team members.
5. Training programs
Mentoring programs are a type of employee benefit that can be beneficial for remote teams. These programs pair experienced team members with newer team members, providing them with guidance and support as they navigate their roles and responsibilities.
Offering successful mentoring programs can keep team members up-to-date on the latest technologies and industry trends, which can improve their skills and advance their careers.
How To Build A Custom Benefits Strategy For Your Remote Teams
1. Understand employee needs
To create a custom benefits package, it's important to consider the needs and preferences of your team. This may involve conducting surveys or focus groups to gather feedback on what types of benefits would be most appealing to your employees.
Once you clearly understand what your team wants, you can tailor your benefits package to include a mix of traditional and unique perks that will be most beneficial to them.
2. Consider organizational goals
When developing custom employee benefits, you must consider the organizational goals of the business. This is because employee benefits should be designed to align with the overall business strategy and support attaining the organization's goals.
By doing so, businesses can ensure that their employee benefits program is effective and can attract and retain top talent. Some key things to consider when aligning employee benefits with organizational goals include the organization's culture and values, its target market and customer base, and its financial and operational objectives.
By considering these factors, businesses can develop employee benefits tailored to their specific needs and help drive success.
3. Mix traditional and modern benefits
HR leaders can mix traditional and modern employee benefits to provide remote teams the best of both worlds.
One way to do this is to provide perks like access to online learning and development resources. To simplify the process, it’s best to leverage employee coaching templates. HR leaders can also consider offering a mix of individual and team-based rewards and recognition programs and various social and wellness activities in which remote teams can participate.
By offering a mix of traditional and modern employee benefits, HR leaders can help create a positive and supportive work environment for remote teams and ensure they have the resources and support they need to be motivated and productive.
4. Document the guidelines
HR leaders can focus on documentation of employee benefits programs to avoid executing them haphazardly.
Create a clear and comprehensive benefits handbook that outlines all employee benefits. This handbook should include detailed descriptions of each benefit, eligibility requirements, enrollment procedures, and other pertinent information.
HR managers should also develop standard procedures for accessing employee benefits and make sure that they communicate these to the employees. Further, they should regularly review and update the employee benefits handbook to ensure that it remains accurate and up-to-date.
By documenting the employee benefits program thoroughly, HR leaders can help to ensure that employees have the information they need to make informed decisions about their benefits and that the program is administered consistently and effectively.
5. Gather feedback after initial implementation
After the initial implementation of an employee benefits program, HR managers should actively collect employee feedback to confirm that the program is meeting their needs and address any issues that may have arisen.
This can be done through various methods, such as surveys, focus groups, and one-on-one meetings with employees (instead of only the decision-makers).
HR managers should also encourage employees to provide ongoing feedback on the benefits program so that they can make changes and improvements as needed.
By collecting and considering such data from employees, HR leaders can tailor the benefits program to suit the needs of their workforce better and ensure that it provides value to employees. This can increase employee satisfaction and ultimately support organizational goals.
A well-thought-out benefits package can engage employees by showing them that the company values their well-being and career growth.
Further, benefits aren't just about keeping employees happy; they can also help with retention. Employees who feel valued as individuals are more likely to be productive, happy workers overall — and if you're able to secure their loyalty with tangible rewards and incentives, then you'll have made huge strides toward retaining those key employees who make your business run smoothly.
Communicating your benefits package clearly and effectively to your team is also crucial. This may involve creating informational materials or simply ensuring all employees have access to information about the benefits they are entitled to.
By ensuring that your team is well-informed about the benefits they are receiving, you can help to maximize their engagement and satisfaction.
Author Bio: Mehdi Hussen is a SaaS marketing and organic growth consultant. He helps SaaS businesses drive organic growth and customer acquisition through SEO and data-driven content marketing strategies. Mehdi spends his spare time musing about startup growth strategies, personal productivity, and remote work. Connect with him through Twitter or LinkedIn