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Flexible Benefits – What to Know

Woman enjoying her Flexible Benefits on phone by Bruce Mars

Watch out, traditional options plans, because flexible benefits are making big strides. While traditional benefit models provide specific, flat advantage is extended to the employee by their organization, ‘flexible’ or ‘personalized’ benefits challenge this entire hierarchical structure. These flexible benefits employees with stipends, allowing them to actively pick and choose the benefits they want to engage with. 

Building Custom Benefits for Your Workplace

But before we get to asking if flexible benefits might be right for your workplace, we should first figure out just what exactly these ‘personalized’ benefits look like. The most common type of flexible benefit is a benefits spending account. Instead of a direct benefit, employees receive specific stipends in their spending accounts that can be spent across a range of lifestyle benefits. A great example of this is a Lifestyle Spending Account. As opposed to hosting regular mandatory training sessions, employees with an LSA might receive a stipend to attend trainings and seminars that they find interesting or useful from a broader list. Employees might even receive stipends to build their own home office, fitness supplies, or maybe even just groceries! 

What makes flexible benefits so special – and so often highly well-received by employees – is right in the name; the tremendous level of flexibility they offer. Increasingly diverse workforces have similarly diverse needs, so a ‘flat’ benefit that might be a great boon for one employee – for instance, paternity leave for a new parent – isn’t going to help an employee with no plans of having a kid. By offering flexibility and personalization in benefits through stipends, your new parent might be able to spend his benefits on childcare supplies, while the child-free employee instead books a vacation!

Flexibility and Discount Programs

Although stipends are the most common, discount programs also fall into the category of highly customizable flexible benefits. Much like how a lifestyle stipend gives employees complete flexibility to purchase new gym equipment, bird-watching binoculars, or anything in between, having access to thousands of discounts means that employees have the freedom to pick out just the savings that matter to them – no matter their hobbies, situation, or identity.

Diversity and flexibility go hand in hand; diverse workplace situations require flexible mindsets, whether it’s in accounting for the needs of both in-person and remote employees or offering benefits attractive to individuals at entirely different life stages. By their very nature, no matter how unique your industry or employees, flexible benefits can fit right in.

That’s why you might want to consider PerkSpot for your company’s benefits suite. Not only does PerkSpot offer the adaptability of flexible benefits so that every employee can find something they’ll love – it’s also a no-cost solution, being completely free to add to your organization. Whether you’re looking for a cost-effective way to beef up your benefits or just a perk that everyone can enjoy, let’s talk about how PerkSpot’s discount program could be just the thing you need.

Conquer the Sunday Night Blues

sunday night blues

An awesome article in Fistful of Talent recently discussed the “Sunday Night Blues”. Well-written and well-researched, the author describes the misery many people experience before returning to work on Monday morning. He dives into why this might be true of the 76% of Americans who say their Sunday Night Blues are so bad they want to look for a new job.

While you can read the article for a more in-depth view of the “Sunday Night Blues” and their sweep across America, let’s discuss a few ways we can conquer the blues by providing employees with a better place to work in the first place.

Give Them Something to Look Forward To

Think about your team and the weekly activity they enjoy doing the most. Maybe it’s a meal you share together or a fun team building activity. Whatever it is, try moving it to Monday to engage your staff right from the get-go. Start incorporating a daily stand-up as part of your Monday routine to encourage your team by celebrating wins and highlighting star performers. Just make sure to save any constructive criticism for later in the week when morale is higher.

Take Advantage of Fridays

When the end of the week rolls around most of us check out for the weekend. But often that can make Monday even more painful. Ending your Fridays well and setting you and your team up for success is essential for a productive and pleasant start to your week. The Muse provides a helpful worksheet for ending your week by celebrating accomplishments and assigning tasks for the week ahead. Using this sheet can help you feel more successful and less overwhelmed on Monday morning.

Let Them Flex Their Schedule

One of the greatest benefits at PerkSpot is the ability to flex our schedules. This could mean working from home when it’s storming out or working later hours to catch up on some Zzzzs. Providing flexible schedule opportunities for employees can help improve productivity and has even made a difference in closing the gender pay gap. Telecommuting is becoming all the more popular, so it will not only satisfy your current employees but also help you stay competitive when recruiting new hires.

Lead by Example

Nothing is worse than walking into the office on Monday morning to hear your supervisor or coworker moan and complain. On the other hand, Gallup reports that “Positive leaders deliberately increase the flow of positive emotions within their organization,” and can lead to greater engagement and improved performance. If the leadership is not staying positive, it’s highly unlikely their employees will maintain a positive attitude.

Combat the “Sunday Night Blues” by providing a better workplace for our employees, starting with our own attitudes.