Hiring employees for your service business is a great accomplishment and a tell tale sign your business is growing. While it may take some time, once you find the right people for your company you’re met with another set of challenges. How will you make sure they’ll stay? What will you pay them? Will you have to offer benefits and other packages?
These are all great questions and ones that will surely lead to difficult decisions.
And while things like hiring bonuses and benefit packages may seem expensive, you must consider if it would actually be more costly to lose that employee. Benefits like these will help with employee retention and ultimately make them happier and more engaged at work.
In fact, 80% of employees said they would prioritize benefits over a higher paying job while deciding on a career. It goes without saying that if you choose not to further incentivize your employees you risk losing them to competitors that offer more attractive salaries and benefit packages.
Need ideas on what to offer?
Check out the top five employee benefits that technicians and other service industries look for and your current team will be grateful for.
Top five service technician benefits
1. Generous paid time off
This is one of the most important employee benefits you can offer. Allowing your employees to spend time with their family and friends not only makes them happier, but also more productive while they are at work. You can offer paid days off with sick days, vacations, holidays, and other company-wide events. While you may not be able to afford paying employees for every off day early on, it is important to give them this time off and allow them to not have to worry about bills or expenses at the same time.
One way you can implement paid time off is through time spent with your company. Commonly, businesses will steadily increase their employees time off as they stay at the company longer.
As a business owner, you should be familiar with the Family Medical Leave Act, or FMLA, which specifies employees' rights to unpaid leave in some situations.. Caring for a child or recovering from a serious illness are examples of qualifying circumstances. Workers' rights to return to work and keep their benefits are protected under the FMLA, but only employees who have worked for the company for a certain amount of time and completed a certain number of hours are eligible.
2. Insurance packages
Your business may be able to provide a comprehensive insurance plan that covers life, medical, vision, and disability services. Alternatively, you may choose to switch to a standard health care package or mix and match options.
In actuality, you are not required by law to offer any insurance benefits to your employees. However, since it is such a common practice, failing to have at least a rudimentary health insurance package can make it difficult to recruit new workers or retain current employees.
3. 401(k) and retirement packages
Offering a 401(k) means that a portion of each paycheck (typically 3 percent to 6 percent) is deposited into a separate retirement account. In a similar way to withholding taxes, this takes the guesswork and energy out of planning for retirement.
Employees value businesses that assist them in planning for retirement. In many cases, employers match employee contributions in a 401(k). In turn, this provides an additional source of income for the employee to draw upon during retirement. Despite its prevalence, there is no legal provision for a matching 401(k) account, similar to insurance benefits.
4. Family discounts
Many times, your service business offers services that the employee and their family can benefit from. Consider including discounts for employees and their families in the compensation plan. Try offering a fixed discount, such as 25% off all services, as this contributes to the bottom line while still making your employees feel respected and appreciated. Also, consider offering a family discount as this can help drive referrals from the family members they may recommend it to.
Discounts are also a great way to form relationships with local businesses, other service providers, and really anybody who’s willing to exchange discounts for their employees. This is a relatively inexpensive way to drive more business and cross-promote other local businesses.
5. Employee appreciation events
As of mid-2021, this may not seem like the most feasible option, but it is still one to consider after restrictions are lifted or if you have a small team. Regardless of when, appreciation events can be small or large, expensive or inexpensive, but no matter what you do, the main purpose is to show your gratitude toward the employee.
When thinking about quick appreciation gestures, you can offer breakfast a few times a month, give gift cards to local businesses, or take your team out for happy hour. For longer events, you can host outings at local entertainment venues, attend a local sporting event, have a team dinner, and many other great options to show your employees how much you appreciate them!
Need more ideas?
If you’re looking to further incentivize your employees, you’ll have to be innovative! Discover what types of benefits will be most beneficial to the workers by getting to know them. Some workplaces, for example, have on-site childcare if there tend to be a lot of families in that field. Others pay for continuing education through tuition reimbursement and scholarship opportunities. To make it easier for your field service technicians to dispatch to a client without having to stop by the main office, you might consider providing them with a company-owned car.
No matter what you decide to do, the principle is the same; Treat your employees well, and they will do the same for you. Ask them what they want, and if you decide it will help the business, do the best you can to accommodate. Also, make sure your benefits are on par, if not better, than rivals. This is important to review often to assure your employees feel like your company is consistently offering them the best opportunities in the area.