Benefits are one of the key pillars of good employee retention. According to data compiled by LinkedIn in 2020, “better compensation and benefits” was one of the top three reasons that both Millennials and Gen Xers left their jobs.
This means you can’t just put together a run-of-the-mill benefits package and expect it to be a talent retention tool. On the contrary, sub-par or even adequate benefits are going to be a turn-off in a market where quality talent is at a premium.
This focus on good benefits has made reviewing and expanding your benefits package beyond the basics an essential strategy moving forward.
The Need to Review Your Benefits Package
If you’ve left your benefits package on autopilot in recent years, it’s time to give it a once-over. What’s more, employers can’t just select basic items anymore.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, as recently as March of 2021, the majority of workers with access to employer-sponsored benefits had many of the basics already available. BLS reported that staples such as paid sick leave, unpaid family leave, and paid vacations were par for the course for most benefits packages.
For employers, this means offering competitive health care benefits, matching 401(k) contributions, and providing generous PTO isn’t enough anymore.
While these are good starting points, it has become essential for employers to put additional effort into crafting their benefits packages. They need to go beyond the generic and tailor the combination to the needs of their workers.
For instance, HBR reports that the most desirable employee benefits go well beyond retirement accounts and health insurance. Two decades into the 21st century, employees are also looking for things like work-life balance, flexible work hours, and work-from-home options. Often these perks will give a job the edge over higher-paying jobs with less attractive benefits packages.
Of course, post-pandemic, many work-from-home benefits have also become normalized. This means employers need to look even farther if they’re going to find benefits that truly help them stand apart.
One way to do that which can resonate with the politically active, socially aware younger generation of workers is to include a way to give targeted donations.
Business institutions often include philanthropy as part of their operations. In most cases, though, they do this through clunky corporate foundations that are rife with inefficiencies. Focussing on philanthropy can improve employee experience and retention.
Should You Consider Philanthropy-as-a-Service?
Giving platform Groundswell defines the PhaaS or “philanthropy-as-a-service” model as charitable giving that “experiences near-constant innovation as a purpose-built, third-party software company researches, designs, builds, and launches new tools to corporate, individual, and nonprofit customers.”
In other words, PhaaS does for philanthropy what SaaS does for technology.
To use the latter as an example, SaaS companies have streamlined the complexities of creating tech solutions in-house. While IT departments are still needed, nowadays, they typically manage a growing tech stack of third-party SaaS tools that make their jobs much easier.
Off-site entities manage, update, and perfect these tools. They are then offered to end-users at a transparent cost that eliminates the need for excessive hands-on tampering.
In the same way, PhaaS can take the extremely complex business of corporate philanthropy and streamline it off-site. This takes the legal, technological, and logistical responsibilities off of the shoulders of corporate foundations.
PhaaS platforms also have the power of allowing businesses to distribute the responsibility of choosing where charitable funds should go. Businesses using a PhaaS tool can let individual employees donate to the targeted charities that they choose.
Often all that’s required from an employee is to download an app, log in, and make a few selections. Before they know it, their charitable preferences are official. This offers many different benefits, including:
- Removing the overhead cost of running a foundation
- Funneling more funds toward charities in an efficient, data-driven manner
- Decentralizing the donation process and empowering employees to have a hand in choosing what organizations their company supports
- Enabling individuals to support charities in perpetuity
This spreading out of the wealth and decision-making power, in effect, turns corporate philanthropy into an employee-driven benefit.
Spicing Up Your Benefits Package With Targeted Giving
Benefits packages are a key element of any retention strategy. Along with compensation, a good set of benefits can send a message that you care about the well-being of your employees.
At the same time, a careless, sub-par, or outdated package can become a liability. It can make it much easier for competitors to lure employees away with the promise of a more compassionate set of benefits that will meet their needs.
If you haven’t reviewed your benefits package in a while, it’s time to do so. Don’t wait. Start by making sure that basic building blocks like PTO and a 401(k) are available and up to date. Also, address more modern considerations, such as work-from-home and flexible work options.
From there, consider adding something like targeted giving as a CSR-inspired perk. Invite your employees in on your brand’s philanthropic efforts. This can have the effect of cultivating happier workers who feel invested in their employer and proud of the charitable work that their workplace supports.