The Best Benefits Package For Small Businesses
It’s a nasty choice: Offer juicy benefits and forgo profits, or cut back on benefits and risk losing your best employees.
Hitting upon the right formula is growing ever more critical as health care costs continue to escalate and the economy continues to stall. Worse, most entrepreneurs don’t have the time or the expertise to untangle this messy calculation.
We beseeched experts in the employee benefits field, to craft a well-balanced basket of benefits that is neither too lavish nor too Spartan for most small-business owners.
The general consensus: To attract talent and compete effectively, entrepreneurs should offer health insurance, some life and disability insurance and probably a retirement savings plan. For specialty benefits–like vision and dental coverage–take time to understand what your current employees want and whether they’ll be willing to chip in.
This one’s a must. Most states mandate that employers cover at least 50% of the premiums, there are options to pay less than this.
Those who join young or small companies may have a thirst for adventure, but that doesn’t mean they don’t want to sock away for retirement. To stay competitive, small firms should offer a retirement plan.
A defined contribution plan encourages employees to set aside their own funds for retirement each pay period; some companies also match a certain percentage of what employees contribute. With defined contribution plans, employees can invest their money as they choose, via an array of mutual funds, vs. receiving a declining (in real-dollar terms) future income stream.
Next to health care and retirement plans, perks like disability insurance, life insurance, dental and vision coverage aren’t nearly as important when it comes to attracting and keeping talented employees. Still, having a choice matters.