Attracting and retaining employees is a constant struggle for companies and in the current environment, it is almost impossible to find people willing to work. Now more than ever, employers need to hold onto talent.

It is critical for employers to tailor their benefits offerings in a way that attracts and retains the most employees. While each workforce will have unique needs and interests, there are some commonalities seen among small business employees.


Health insurance is consistently one of the most desired benefits among employees. That may be because health care is so expensive and is unaffordable without employer-sponsored insurance. By offering generous health benefits, employers can compete for top talent. In fact, doubling down on health insurance might be a better option for some employers than adding other ancillary benefits that employees do not need or want.


The ability to take time away from work is an important consideration for employees. Leave benefits will vary by workplace, but they typically include paid time off (PTO), vacation days and sick time. These types of leave usually come with specific use requirements. For employers looking to attract and retain employees, expanding these benefits could be a great advantage. This may include allowing faster PTO accrual, providing more sick days or allowing for flexible scheduling.

Employees want to be recognized for their hard work. Failing to do so can lower morale and affect retention. Introducing performance bonuses as an employee benefit can be a way to combat this. Performance bonuses will vary, but the general idea is to compensate employees in some way for a job well done. For instance, employees might receive incentives such as gift cards, cash, additional PTO or other perks, depending on their achievement. However, before implementing such bonuses, employers should ensure compliance with any applicable workplace laws regarding employee compensation.


Financial security is very important to employees, especially millennials. Employees invest their time and energy into their work. As a tradeoff, many employees want their employers to invest in their retirements in return for years of service. Offering a 401(k) with contribution matching can be a powerful attraction and retention tool, as it demonstrates an employer’s investment in their workers in the long term.


Employees may leave a workplace simply because they want other opportunities or challenges. Employers may want to think proactively about ways to keep employees around.
Generally, professional development involves cross-training employees on other positions or preparing them to take on additional responsibilities. Offering such development opportu- nities also signals to prospective employees that a workplace has upward mobility and is willing to help workers along with their career pathing goals.


Wellness is a hot topic these days, and employees are looking for employers who take wellness seriously. Ignoring wellness initiatives may be interpreted as ignoring overall health, especially mental health.

Wellness benefits may include mental health counseling, healthy breakroom snacks, gym memberships, fitness trackers, or yoga sessions. When it comes down to it, employees want to feel like their employers care about them as individuals. This means prioritizing well-being.

However, these benefits are not employers’ only option to help attract and retain employees. Reach out to Heffernan Insurance Brokers today to learn more about these benefits and other potential incentives to recruit and retain employees.


    Have a question or are in need of HR services?