How To Offer Benefits To Stay Competitive (Without Breaking The Bank)

National Minimum Wage increased on the 1st of October, and in April 2017, the National Living wage will also rise again. So, how does a small business remain competitive and keep their talent without breaking the bank? The answer, dear reader, is by looking at the benefits you can offer your teams.

In this day and age, businesses need to become more creative in the add-ons they offer. New, less traditional Employee Benefits like perks, medical, discount vouchers, and wellbeing help businesses attract, engage and retain their best talent.

The Challenge

The National Living Wage has indeed stopped some small businesses from increasing staff. By September 2017, the majority of businesses will have workplace pensions in place. These two hikes in business costs mean there will be less money available to offer employees. So let’s take a look at some alternative ways of rewarding your staff:

Staff Treats is a website and app whereby (with your help) employees can access discounts online and in-store. Discounts range from grocery shopping to cinema vouchers, free coffee or 2-4-1 meals in High Street chain restaurants – and it is cheaper than you think!

So, as an example, if your employee spends £40 a week on shopping that equates to £2080 a year. Staff Treats will save your employee 4%, or £83.20. That’s two whole free shopping weeks a year or some new shoes! You would pay less than that discount per employee per year.

When it comes to emplyee benefits, I would think about the following:

What Benefits Make your Team Tick?

When it comes to additional benefits, what kind of alternative ideas would float your team’s boat? Is it a drink at the pub on a Friday or a treat every so often? No business is the same; there is no cookie-cutter method of deciding what benefits will suit your team best. So ask them! I know that is a shocking thought but would they prefer you to give some extra holiday or invest in a perk like Perkbox.

Blended Learning

Ensuring they are the best they can be, while also nurturing their talent, could interest your team. Spending time with them and increasing their skills may cost you your time, but not necessarily cold hard cash. Not all training has to be sitting in a classroom, and it can be a massive benefit to an employee. An employee may prefer you spending some money on enhancing their skills, and there is still funding available.


Review your benefits every year or two. Times change, employees come and go, fads and fashions change and what people want changes; so don’t get complacent!


Don’t forget to budget for all the costs as it all adds up. If you do something one year, then employees will expect it the next. On a similar note, if you provide new benefits for one of your team, other employees may expect the same treatment.

Naturally, I’ve kept a few of my best ideas on fresh and exciting employee benefits up my sleeve. If you’d like to hear them, drop me an email or give me a ring. A simple benefits survey can help find out what your team want and where you should be spending your resources.




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