If you are a small business who is still struggling during this unprecedented time, you are not alone. According to a new Goldman Sachs survey, 96% of small businesses have been impacted by COVID-19. As the effects of the coronavirus pandemic continue to linger, small business owners must decide where to spend their limited resources to begin to rebound or stay afloat.
Many entrepreneurs rely on the skill, passion and talent of their workforce to elevate their company and find continuous growth, especially in times of uncertainty. You have likely heard the saying that “people are your company’s greatest asset” many times. But how do you support your employees while keeping your company out of the red?
When there is a downturn in the economy, you can help your employees feel secure by offering them the benefits of a big business, with the flexibility, creativity and ownership they have at a small company. It is possible to give your employees the tools they need to stay healthy and continue to make a profit when sales are low.
Focus on the Health of Your Employees
When budgets are tight and employees are concerned about staying healthy, benefits like table tennis, free food and fitness equipment might need to take a back seat. According to the Glassdoor Employment Confidence Survey, 88% of job seekers take health, dental and vision insurance into consideration over any other benefit. Since overall well-being is a major concern right now, this is where you may want to focus your limited resources.
There is a common misconception that dental, vision and other ancillary benefits are costly additions to your already pricey health care plan. There are many ways to structure ancillary benefits for your employees to add big value with a small effect on your bottom line.
Think You Can’t Afford Big Benefits? Think Again.
Benefits carriers want to see small, local companies thrive. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration, 47.5% of the U.S. workforce is made up of small business employees. When small businesses are profitable, it helps fuel the economy and promotes growth. That’s why most benefits carriers offer something called “voluntary” benefits to small businesses. Voluntary benefits may be available for a variety of products, including dental insurance, vision coverage, legal services, identity protection, pet insurance, life insurance and more.
With voluntary benefits, companies pay as little—or as much—as they want toward their employees’ low monthly premium. Even if employees pay 100% of their premium, with no employer contribution, they still receive an affordable group rate. In other words, voluntary benefits are a cost-efficient way to provide additional coverage to your employees that will improve their health and well-being.
When evaluating which benefits to add to your overall package, remember that it’s nearly impossible to meet the varied needs of each employee with a one-size-fits-all benefits offering. Voluntary benefits can be a great way to offer more variety in your benefits package to meet the needs of your diverse workforce, which ultimately will make your employees happier and more productive at work. They can also help employers attract and retain talented employees, many of whom may be enticed to jump ship if a competitor offers more choice and flexibility.
Save Money by Keeping Your People Healthy
The cost of losing a knowledgeable employee varies based on the company and industry. However, we know that once you gain a group of talented, hard-working people, you don’t want to lose them. Building a creative and productive team takes time and effort, so don’t forget to invest in your workforce.
A little research can go a long way in helping you decide which benefits will keep your employees the healthiest and happiest. For example, more than 164 million hours of work are lost each year due to dental disease, according to the Surgeon General’s Report on Oral Health in America. Delta Dental’s 2018 Adult Oral Health Survey found that adults with dental coverage are 73% more likely to visit the dentist at least once a year. By offering dental coverage, you can help your employees avoid oral health problems that require them to call in sick or put them at higher risk for other health conditions, thereby improving productivity.
More and more small business owners are realizing the potential of benefits as a key motivator of people and business strategy. When employees have the benefits they need to maintain their overall well-being, they spend more time in the office feeling healthy and productive. Plus, they will be more loyal to their employer because they were given the right tools to take care of themselves and their loved ones during a stressful time.
It may be worth asking your benefits broker or insurance carriers about voluntary benefits. Offering voluntary benefits to your employees can help make your benefits package more enticing. It can also save you and your employees money and promote overall wellness among your workforce.
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