When eval­u­at­ing employ­ee ben­e­fits, essen­tials such as health and den­tal plans, vaca­tion time and 401(k) con­tri­bu­tions quick­ly come to mind. Anoth­er ben­e­fit employ­ers should con­sid­er involves sub­si­diz­ing learn­ing as well as ambi­tions. Grants and reim­burse­ments toward advanced degrees and con­tin­u­ing edu­ca­tion can be a smart invest­ment for both employ­ers and employees.

Edu­ca­tion­al ben­e­fits are strong­ly linked to work­er sat­is­fac­tion. A sur­vey by the Soci­ety for Human Resource Man­age­ment revealed that near­ly 80 per­cent of respond­ing work­ers who rat­ed their edu­ca­tion ben­e­fits high­ly also rat­ed their employ­ers high­ly. While only 30 per­cent of those rat­ing their high­er edu­ca­tion ben­e­fits as fair or poor con­verse­ly rat­ed their employ­er highly.

These ben­e­fits are pop­u­lar with busi­ness­es as well. In a sur­vey by the Inter­na­tion­al Foun­da­tion of Employ­ee Ben­e­fit Plans, near­ly five of six respond­ing employ­ers offer some form of edu­ca­tion­al ben­e­fit. Their top rea­sons are to retain cur­rent employ­ees, main­tain or raise employ­ee sat­is­fac­tion, keep skill lev­els cur­rent, attract new tal­ent and boost inno­va­tion and pro­duc­tiv­i­ty. Tax cred­its offer addi­tion­al advan­tages. Qual­i­fy­ing pro­grams offer employ­ers tax cred­its up to $5,250 per employ­ee, per year.

At the same time, com­pa­nies should offer these ben­e­fits with care as they do pose poten­tial pit­falls. High­er edu­ca­tion assis­tance can be cost­ly, even when not cov­er­ing full costs. Work­ers tak­ing advan­tage can become over­whelmed with the demands of after-hour stud­ies, affect­ing job per­for­mance. Also, employ­ers would be wise to ensure their employ­ees don’t prompt­ly leave and take their new skills elsewhere.

When well-planned, edu­ca­tion­al ben­e­fits will like­ly prove a good invest­ment. Sev­en­ty-five per­cent of respon­dents to SHRM’s sur­vey con­sid­er their edu­ca­tion­al-assis­tance pro­grams suc­cess­ful. To boost your employ­ee morale, skill lev­els and job-sat­is­fac­tion scores, con­sid­er the ben­e­fit that may deliv­er them all, and more.

Find out more:
IFEBP: Why Edu­ca­tion­al Assis­tance Pro­grams Work
EBRI: Fun­da­men­tals of Employ­ee Ben­e­fit Programs

By Bill Olsen

Orig­i­nal­ly pub­lished  by www.UBABenefits.com