Employee benefits to watch for
to maximize human capital retention.
Read time: 6 minutes
When unemployment is low and there are too few talents for the available jobs, companies have to up the ante. And the Czech Republic is one such country experiencing the mixed blessing of a low unemployment rate. While the economy is booming, companies are learning the hard way that workers are starting to flex their muscles.
However, while in the past the answer was to throw money at the problem, that doesn’t work with modern workforces. Wages are no longer the only major employee motivator. Employers have to look beyond the salary and get creative in using benefits to drive both recruitment and retention. Nowadays, people see benefits as a measure of how much a company cares about its Human Capital. You can’t expect existing employees to stay loyal if they see your competitors “caring more” about their employees.
With that in mind let’s look at what 2017 will bring when it comes to employee benefits in the Czech Republic.
You can be sure that the benefits sector will be in for plenty of changes. Companies continue to invest in attractive benefits more than ever before in response to worker needs and a competitive market.
Things like meal vouchers or free refreshment at the workplace are a given. But what are some of the more unique and most in demand benefits that companies are implementing nowadays?
Flexibility and Work-Life Balance is Driving the Trend
It’s no surprise that employees call for flexible working hours more and more. It’s way easier to manage our professional and personal lives if we have a certain level of flexibility. In fact, flexible working hours are currently the most wanted benefit among employees across all sectors in the Czech Republic.
This is actually not necessarily a problematic concession for employers. When schemes are implemented in the right way, flexible working can be to everyone’s advantage. Just as people have ever-changing timetables, so too do companies.
A recent study also shows that about 75% of millennials (people born between 1986 and 1995) would prefer the opportunity of working from home. And companies are responding by offering flexible working hours, home-office possibilities, sick days and extra holidays.
When talking about work, we all know that the biggest source of stress is financial stress. Addressing this situation is also one of the employer priorities in 2017. Quite a few of companies decided to increase salaries to become more competitive. They also put in place a better financial bonus structure.
It is still not quite a standard benefit to have, but nearly every second employee receives a 13th salary or other form of financial reward. Based on recent trends, we can see that bonuses are starting to expand.
One final point about financial incentives. There is an interesting thing I have observed during my years as a Talent Recruitment Consultant. It concerns the length of time a person has been with the same employer. Those who have been with a company a short time value financial bonuses the most.
Education and development play an important role
With all the possibilities we have in this century, there are also more of us who value the contribution to our further education and professional development. In response to this, the majority of companies keep increasing their educational offerings. They realize that this is an effective way to bring growth in employee motivation and knowledge. And most of us are happy to take on the challenge and boost our skills.
If you are eager to learn more, you will have more chances to do so. Languages, IT, soft skills like people management, and other education courses are not unique anymore. They have actually become so popular that education-related benefits now occupy second place on the benefits ladder.
A better life of leisure
Pharmacy purchase vouchers, fitness center passes, extended weekends at a spa, or concert tickets are just a brief example of what you can get when having leisure time benefits. They support our overall satisfaction, personal development, health and vitality. Many scientific studies have shown provision of leisure time benefits has a positive impact on employers as well. Not only are they a useful tool for rewarding and motivating employees, but they are economically beneficial for both sides.
At the present time, they are mainly popular in Prague and other bigger cities. You might think that only large corporations offer these types of benefits. In reality, about one third of small companies with less than 50 employees support their employees in leisure activities.
On the wave of tradition
Don’t worry that the new, trendy benefits will replace out the traditional ones. For example, meal vouchers or subsidies still remain, and will remain for some time, the most provided employee benefit in our country. A hungry Czech doesn’t work well 🙂
Other benefits in no present danger of extinction include mobile phones, team building activities, pensions, life insurance contributions, free drinks at the workplace and other ‘standard’ benefits.
On average companies nowadays offer 8 benefits . . . and if the market situation continues at this pace, the future will definitely bring even more.
Maybe a free Uber ride to work? Or a robot personal assistant? OK, perhaps I’m writing my wish list for my boss already! 🙂
Do you want to find out more about the kind of benefits that helps attract and retain top talent? Why not send us an email, make a contact request through our website Employer Section or even give us a call to book a non commitment meeting for coffee and a chat. We look forward to meeting you and assist your organization.
This post was written by Tereza Barakova.
Tereza is a Masters Degree graduate in Business Management and Corporate Finance, Career Coach, Senior Talent Recruitment Consultant and HR Strategies Support at People Place.
Tereza joined the company in 2015 and has been successfully progressing internally to her current position. Tereza is responsible for career coaching & consulting, recruitment strategies and talent delivery management together with her HR support management responsibilities. She works together with HR Business Partners and Hiring Managers across many disciplines within the employment market in the Czech Republic and Central Europe, ensuring recruitment quality delivery, client and candidate satisfaction are always at the highest standards.
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