Today’s employees are looking for more than just a paycheck and health insurance. Many employees – particularly millennials and younger – strive for a fun environment and work-life balance in addition to their income; these perks, in turn, can lead to a high retention rate and loyal employees. And even better, they’re usually low cost or, in some cases, free!
While yes, the paycheck will always remain a “must,” and health insurance/ benefits are vital, 2018 is a wonderful time to rethink your own employee cultivation strategies, and the following for tried-and-true tips (at LPR, we’ve tried them – and stand by them!) are a great way to start!
1. Special hours/ early close times
Flexibility is one of the greatest perks you can offer your employees. Whether it’s switching up schedules or having special days off, you can give your employees that sense of freedom while simultaneously ensuring you get their best work. For example, here at LPR, we offer employees summer Friday hours (9am – 1pm on Fridays during the summer, starting after Memorial Day up until Labor Day). Being located in the Northeast where the warm weather only lasts a few months, this allows employees to take advantage of the nice weather and a longer weekend. We also offer flexible work hours so early birds can get a start on their day at 8:00 and be out the office door by 5:00 or work the more traditional 9:00 to 6:00 PM.
2. Host happy hours
Employees value the chance to unwind and let loose after a long day at work. Give them something to look forward to by hosting your own company happy hour at a local bar or restaurant. It’s a simple idea that can bring employees, who might not have the opportunity during a busy day, together for a few laughs (and a few drinks). If you’re particularly fond of cost savings, you can also try to work with a new bar or restaurant in your neighborhood to collaborate and see if they have any local biz discounts. (We love taking our employees to new spots in the Hoboken community!)
Treat the office to lunch
Who doesn’t love a free meal? The answer, at least in our office, is no one! Offer to buy lunch for the whole office or, if it’s a not a busy time and employees can more easily take the time away from their desk, take the lunch outside to a local restaurant, or even for a company-wide picnic. Spending time away from the office and chatting over lunch is a refreshing change-up during the week.
Give Extra time off during the holidays
Give your employees peace of mind around the holidays with an extra day off, either before or after the day of the holiday, to help ease any stress and provide more opportunities for family time. At LPR, we typically close the office the day before a holiday, whether it’s Fourth of July or Thanksgiving, allowing employees that extra day for travel or simply to relax!
Show your gratitude
I promised you a free cultivation trick – and here you have it! The cheapest and perhaps most effective way to retain your employees is to show them just how valued they are. This can be a simple pat on the back after a big win, an office-wide note congratulating an employee on a job well done after completed project, or a call-out at the agency-wide meeting so employees going above and beyond get their moment in the spotlight.
I make it a priority to tell my employees day in, day out, just how proud they make me – because they do!! Why shouldn’t they know it? Our low turnover rate tells me that this tactic works!
Sure, the paycheck is essential, but money alone doesn’t cut it anymore. You need to go above and beyond to show why your best employees should stay with your agency, and these simple tricks will have you well on your way in 2018!