We see a lot about company benefits and incentives being offered to employees and prospective team members.

And they’re usually along the lines of free tea and coffee, bean bag chairs or pool tables, or - believe it or not in a time when employees can work from anywhere - access to a laptop or phone (as if they shouldn't be supplied as standard)

Some things which have been viewed as benefits in the past don’t really cut it anymore.

After two years working from home, or remotely and in a flexible way - and proving they can be trusted to do it - employees now view things like flexible working or hybrid working to be a standard part of a contract.

These aren’t benefits anymore.

Just like other office ‘perks’, given the chance between having a pool table or working for someone who values health and wellbeing, we know what employees will choose.

Employee benefits are changing and what employees want from an employer is also changing.

So, what type of employee benefits should you be offering?

You might be surprised, but some of the most popular perks now come in the form of medical cover, or even income protection.

After the last two years and the uncertainty created over jobs and health, employees feel better knowing that if something does impact them, they and their families are covered.

Here’s four employee benefits you might not be offering, that you really should:

Life and critical illness insurance cover

We’ve all seen how unpredictable life can be and knowing your employees and their families are protected from the worst case scenario can be a huge benefit to them - and your business.

Life and critical illness insurance provides a lump sum to your employee or their family or estate in the event they become too ill to continue working, or in the worst case, pass away.

This insurance can be used to help with things like outstanding mortgage payments, ensuring your employees’ family doesn’t face financial uncertainty in what is already going to be a difficult period.

Income protection

Illness or injury are a common part of work, but if any employee misses significant time due to an illness or after an injury, the consequences can be difficult for your business - and them.

From your perspective, how long do you continue to pay them despite not getting the benefits of having them at work?

For the employee - sick pay often doesn’t cover the full amount of their regular wage and can only last for a limited period.

Income protection can be a safety net for you both by paying out to cover any missed work due to illness or injury.

It means you don’t have to pay an employee who is long term absent, and they don’t have to worry about missing out on a wage and potentially falling behind on debts or their mortgage while recovering.

Private medical insurance

Illness or injury can strike at any time and when it does, employees will feel better knowing they’ll be dealt with quickly and professionally.

The NHS is a great public resource, but it’s overstretched and there’s no guarantee an illness or injury can be treated quickly.

Providing access to private medical insurance can give employees peace of mind that if they do become ill, or are injured, they’ll receive treatment much quicker.

Not only that, but private medical treatment tends to be more flexible around the patient, giving them more choice when it comes to the doctors, specialists and even hospitals they use.

Private medical insurance can also benefit you as an employer.

That’s because you’ll be confident your employees are receiving the best treatment, which means they’ll be more likely to return to work quicker as a result.

Relevant person insurance

Relevant life insurance works much the same as traditional life insurance, paying out a lump sum to an employee’s family in the event they pass away.

This type of cover can also be used for company directors, making it beneficial to employees of all levels and providing a sense of reassurance that if the worst should happen, their family or nominated beneficiaries will be provided for.

Time to rethink the importance of employee benefits

Employee benefits have always been an important part of business.

But providing the right benefits is the difference between creating a loyal team of employees and a disillusioned company who feel the only benefits being offered are designed to make their employer look ‘cool’.

Providing financial benefits and incentives that can act as a safeguard for families in the event of death in service or critical illness are genuine benefits that not only benefit your employees and their families, but you as a business.

If you want to know more about offering better employee benefits, and which benefits can truly add value to your business, get in touch