Remote work has now become a reality for many of us since the start of this year. Although a lot of companies have been reluctant to give it in the past, government regulations and lockdowns throughout the world have made a real significant change in the area.
Even as these rules ease up, more and more tech companies are announcing that their employees will have the opportunity to work remotely for the rest of the year and possibly even beyond (just take a look at this tracker!). HR teams, managers, and employees have now found themselves in a new position where workplace support has to be redefined.
What’s needed now to work effectively from home is much different from previous setups, so to really take advantage of this new situation we should all be thinking about the kinds of benefits and perks that should be offered. Let’s face it, free coffee and smoothies in the kitchen office just won’t cut it anymore!
Why do we even need perks in the remote office?
Employee perks and benefits are always eye-catching when it comes to looking for a remote job. Everyone loves getting something back from their workplace and as a result, often feels more appreciated for the work that they do. There are great reasons for a workplace to offer them as well, such as for incentivizing good behavior all the way to helping create a great company culture that everyone loves to talk about.
You really have a lot to gain in both image, employee productivity, and employee happiness when benefits are offered in the correct way. Showing some thought in what is offered is needed though, as the days of the employee fruit basket in the kitchen office are really long gone.
Of course, not all companies can afford to offer a huge amount of benefits to everyone. But as we said, this is where some thinking needs to be done as to what can be offered, and how that will benefit both your employees and the company itself.
Benefits can help us resolve real challenges
Employee perks in a remote office setting don’t just have to be cool benefits for the sake of being cool… they can also help combat some of the issues and challenges that remote employees face. There really are some topics that always rise to the surface when we think of remote work, and targeting your perks towards them really is a win-win situation.
For example, it’s not uncommon for remote workers to struggle to relax when they finish their working day if they have been working from home. Offering online yoga sessions can help overcome this hurdle and let your employees switch off easier. Providing an allowance for setting up a home office also helps to directly deal with a remote issue that a lot of people have. When starting off working from home, not everyone has a space or suitable equipment to really work at their best.
If you begin to think in this way, you don’t really have to see benefits as being money wasted. You can help improve your remote employee’s personal and working lives at the same time.
Ways you can implement top remote perks yourself
If you’re looking for some inspiration of what you or your workplace could offer home office workers, then take a look at some of our suggestions as to what we think are good options to consider:
- Allowance for home office
Setting up the tools and equipment an employee needs at home isn’t always going to be free. An ergonomic chair, scanner, or any other specialized tool they need should be reimbursed. This will help your employees work at their best and helps towards overcoming the issue that we mentioned above.
- Online education stipend
Like all other areas of work, the best techniques and tips for working remotely are constantly evolving. Your company can provide money for online remote training, or even in other areas that would benefit your employees.
- Membership at a virtual coworking space
When working from home, some of your team may want to communicate and work virtually with others who can support and help push them to do their best. A virtual coworking space, like our new Remote-how community, can provide the benefits of a normal coworking space without having to leave your home office. With only real accounts pre-vetted by us at Remote-how, it’s a great way to combine the best of both worlds for your employees and give them a perk that benefits both them and their employer.
- Virtual workout & wellness sessions
Working from home in the same space you relax in can blur the lines between work life and home life. Finding time to take care of yourself and get some exercise into your day is important in staying healthy and happy as a remote worker. A great perk to give your employees then is a virtual workout and wellness session to help take care of their mind and body. You can also find this feature in our new Remote-how virtual coworking space, making it easier to provide more perks with just one subscription.
- Snack boxes
It’s standard for most workplaces now to offer some kind of food in their staff kitchen, so why should it be any different for your employees working remotely? There are a number of services out there that will send out healthy snack boxes directly to the homes of your team. It’s a great way to help them feel appreciated and receive a perk that not everyone always expects when working remotely.
- Digital mental health support
Just like we mentioned earlier about supporting remote employees in their physical health, we should also do as much as we can to support their mental health too. Remote work has its own unique challenges and loneliness can be a real issue for some of us. Digital mental health support is a perk that really applies to remote work well so consider it in your benefit packages.
- Healthcare apps
Similar to the workout & wellness sessions we offer in the Remote-how virtual coworking space, a healthcare app subscription can help a remote employee outside of their online sessions. With this, they can track their progress and help keep healthy even when they’re not actually training. We all need that little bit of support as remoters to remember to get out the remote office!
Rethink your remote benefit priorities
Now that the vast majority of companies are evolving to fit into the new remote world, we need to think about how we are giving out benefits and what our priorities should be. We now have a unique opportunity to use perks and benefits in even more meaningful ways for both the employee and the employer.
So, with everything else changing and being reworked for remote settings, you really shouldn’t miss out on reflecting on your benefits and perks packages. It could just be that you can get a long more bang for your buck, help inspire your teams to work better, and have happy and enthusiastic employees all at the same time.