If your company isn’t already addressing the unique challenges around a remote workforce, it is probably only a matter of time before these questions arise. To say that there are some growing pains is an understatement, as managers struggle with letting go of the timeclock and focusing instead on outcomes that are being delivered by remote employees. Remote employees may enjoy the opportunities associated with working remotely, but they may be tugged in multiple directions and find it difficult to complete projects on time. In the midst of all of this turmoil, HR managers are faced with unique challenges, too — including how to provide fair and equitable employee benefits to all team members. Employee benefits are morphing over time. If you want your organization to stay competitive and be able to attract the next generation of focused experts, it pays to make some decisions about these benefits as soon as possible.
It sounds like the ideal situation: come into your office whenever you would like and leave when you need to. Or perhaps your organization is looking at a more rigid “flexible” schedule: where employees select their daily start and end times from a pre-set group of options that are available to their teams. One stumbling block with flexible schedules is that it’s often difficult to make them consistent across the organization. While some teams can do their work from anywhere (such as IT developers), customer service representatives may need to maintain availability during certain times of the day to answer the phone.
Student Loan or Education Assistance
Are your staff members staggering under an unhealthy load of financial stress and debt? Millions of Americans are still paying for their education, often years after graduating. An inability to work through these heavy payments can cause a great deal of pressure for staff members inside and outside of the office, but only around 4% of employers currently offer any type of assistance paying off student loans. Since this is still a relatively new employee benefit, it could be one that’s used to tempt prime candidates, even those working remotely, away from your competitors!
Finding Local Health & Wellness Options
It’s great to recommend the YMCA or gym down the road from your main office, but how can you research local options for all your remote staff? It can be a challenge, but encouraging this level of wellness is vital for a healthy workforce both now and in the future. When your HR team takes the time to find and vet a few local health and wellness options for remote staff, it can really be a great benefit for these individuals by helping them continue feeling as though they are part of the team — even when they’re not physically in the office.
Clear & Concise Employee Benefits Sign-Up Processes
Online enrollment each year is a time of heavy questions for your HR professionals, particularly as you onboard new staff members or make significant changes to your benefit offerings. When you consider adding in remote employees, the reality of paper forms and the added difficulty of maintaining compliance and privacy rules can feel overwhelming. Working with your benefits broker to create a clear, consistent and concise online benefits sign-up portal may be just what your company needs to help reduce confusion and promote active knowledge of your benefits. When staff members are more comfortable with their benefits, they are less likely to over-utilize and may perhaps be more thoughtful about the way that they utilize their health benefits.
Providing employee benefits for remote workers doesn’t have to be a nightmare, but you do need to keep a few considerations in mind when you’re defining your employee benefits policies in the coming years. Want to learn more about how to incorporate this information into your broader benefits offerings without frustrating other staff members or costing a fortune? Contact the professionals at Employers Select Insurance Services, Inc. today at 916-248-4777 for more information or download our complimentary guide Your Definitive Guide to Industry Terminology today. You’ll gain valuable insight into upcoming trends in the benefits industry as well as learn to understand the terms used to define benefits that can be confusing for HR professionals.