Com­pet­i­tive wages are no longer enough to sat­is­fy and sup­port val­ued employ­ees. Today, a vari­ety of ben­e­fits and perks play an essen­tial role in attract­ing and retain­ing tal­ent. Lifestyle ben­e­fits, some­times referred to as employ­ee perks, are non-salary ben­e­fits giv­en to employ­ees to improve their over­all lifestyle that go above and beyond stan­dard med­ical, den­tal and vision ben­e­fits. These lifestyle ben­e­fits are rapid­ly becom­ing the future of employ­ee benefits.

Around 60% of employ­ees say ben­e­fit offer­ings are a sig­nif­i­cant fac­tor in their deci­sion on whether or not to take a new job. That’s why an increas­ing num­ber of employ­ers are uti­liz­ing lifestyle ben­e­fit plans to entice high-qual­i­­ty appli­cants.  In fact, stud­ies show that 80% of employ­ees would select more ben­e­fits above a pay increase. More­over, younger employ­ees, like Mil­len­ni­als, are more apt to change jobs than their old­er Baby Boomer coun­ter­parts if they are dis­sat­is­fied with the employ­ee ben­e­fits offer­ings avail­able to them.

Lifestyle ben­e­fits are ben­e­fits to enjoy now.  These are mean­ing­ful ser­vices that meet the needs of employ­ees today.  Not tomor­row, next week or even ten years from now.  Employ­ees don’t have to be sick, deceased, dis­abled or over 65 to use them.

In this arti­cle, we will explore the 4 “W’s”—Who, What, When, and Why—of lifestyle ben­e­fits to explain how you can use this tool to improve your ben­e­fits package!

Who Are Lifestyle Ben­e­fits For?

Even com­pa­nies with gen­er­ous over­all ben­e­fits pack­ages can suf­fer from low employ­ee engage­ment and pro­duc­tiv­i­ty which can be exac­er­bat­ed by the mas­sive shift to remote work. Offer­ing perks that are cus­tomized to your people’s unique needs is huge­ly ben­e­fi­cial for com­pa­nies want­i­ng to increase employ­ee engage­ment and reten­tion.  In the increas­ing­ly com­pet­i­tive job mar­ket, this real­ly sets employ­ers apart because it demon­strates a vest­ed inter­est on the part of the employ­er to pro­vide oppor­tu­ni­ties for per­son­al, as well as pro­fes­sion­al growth.   Lifestyle ben­e­fits, par­tic­u­lar­ly in the form of flex­i­ble perk stipends, are an ide­al way to offer per­son­al­iza­tion and also pro­mote an inclu­sive com­pa­ny culture.

What Lifestyle Ben­e­fits Can Employ­ers Offer?

Lifestyle ben­e­fits can be cus­tomized to meet many dif­fer­ent types of needs. For instance, an employ­ee might be send­ing their child to col­lege for the first time. If they want advi­sors or finan­cial plan­ners, a lifestyle ben­e­fits account can cov­er it. Or what if an employ­ee wants to take advan­tage of a gym mem­ber­ship or health app?  This could also be cov­ered through a lifestyle ben­e­fits pro­gram. Every­one ben­e­fits from a calm, hap­py, and val­ued employ­ee!  Oth­er exam­ples of offer­ings you can include in a lifestyle ben­e­fits pro­gram include:

When Should You Offer Lifestyle Benefits?

Real­ly the answer to the ques­tion of when you should offer lifestyle ben­e­fits is-now!  Now is the right time to make the most of lifestyle ben­e­fits by set­ting employ­ees up and edu­cat­ing them of their perks.When orga­ni­za­tions offer lifestyle ben­e­fits, it’s about build­ing pos­i­tive, long-term rela­tion­ships between exec­u­tives, super­vi­sors and employ­ees.  It’s about invest­ment and ded­i­ca­tion to employ­ee well-being.

Why Pro­vide Lifestyle Ben­e­fits at Your Com­pa­ny 

There are so many rea­sons to pro­vide lifestyle ben­e­fits but it pri­mar­i­ly boils down to one thing: employ­ee sat­is­fac­tion.  Employ­ees want to feel val­ued by their employ­ers and if this can be achieved by help­ing them afford the lifestyle they enjoy and envi­sion for them­selves, then do it!

We are, after all, liv­ing in the age of per­son­al­iza­tion.  Every­thing in our lives, from our Net­flix sub­scrip­tions to Spo­ti­fy playlists is cus­tomized to us and our pref­er­ences.  Lifestyle ben­e­fits can be designed in a way that address­es the var­i­ous needs of your diverse work­force, whether that means sup­port­ing a 22-year-old recent grad­u­ate liv­ing in the city, or a 45-year-old exec­u­tive with three kids in a home in the sub­urbs, lifestyle ben­e­fits are ide­al for that type of per­son­al­iza­tion and inclu­siv­i­ty, espe­cial­ly in the form of flex­i­ble perk stipends.

If com­pa­nies want the best poten­tial can­di­dates, they have to think out­side the box with per­son­al­ized ben­e­fit offer­ings.  Every­one wins with a flex­i­ble lifestyle ben­e­fits plat­form. After all, phys­i­cal­ly and men­tal­ly healthy employ­ees are more pro­duc­tive, which is bet­ter for the bot­tom line.