In association with PC World Business
Call them perks, rewards, benefits, loyalty points, everybody loves a freebie or a discount which is why they have proven so popular in the competitive consumer market where the likes of Nectar or Clubcard have been a bit, striking a chord in every bargain hunter out there.
For employers or employees, running or embracing such schemes can be beneficial as well and there are many organisations across the land that facilitate and manage these.
Clearly, employees do love benefits as it is not always about money.
A lot of the "softer", universal benefits (flexibility at the workplace, chocolate and drinks in the canteen or regular parties) are usually doled out regardless of your role or level in the organisation, others require more homework from the employee, especially when it comes to determining whether you can actually subscribe to one.
One of the organisation offering EBS is Connected Benefits, a zero-cost employee benefits scheme provider for businesses of all size across the UK and one of their national partners is PC World Business.
Enrolling on one of them means that payment on orders done through the Connected benefits scheme are via salary sacrifice and are exempt from Income Tax and National Insurance.
These can be spread over a whole year, providing with a great way to budget tech-related expenses without having to incur a large capital expense.
Savings of up to 20% can be made on most technological devices including smartphones, tablets, laptops, peripherals and even gaming consoles.
Even SIM-only mobile subscriptions are sometimes offered on these schemes although the savings may be nullified by promotions done by the mobile networks themselves.
Savings can vary though and would be determined by the individual Income Tax rate and National Insurance contributions, in other words, all cases are likely to differ from one another.
Arguably not everyone can offer unlimited paid holidays and time off, posh MacBook Pro laptops and free gourmet lunches and dinners like some Silicon Valley start-ups have offered.
At the end of the day though, an EBS is all about attracting, retaining and rewarding employees while keeping the cost of running the programme at £0 or close to that.
There are countless examples of how a simple, straight-forward employee benefit scheme makes a company more attractive to new potential recruits.
That reduces recruitment costs and timeframes, something that has a positive knockoff effect if a company is planning to expand rapidly. Conversely, in theory, EBS helps to stem or minimise your employee turnover, which also has a direct impact on recruitment costs.
EBS are also an effective way of boosting employee morale. Nothing shouts "we care about you" louder than a well-thought, well-implemented decent scheme. Just make sure that you know what employees are REALLY yearning for rather than go for the first EBS proposal that drops on your desk.
Otherwise, your company risks getting ridiculed either on social networks or worst still in national newspapers.
All the above usually translates into happier, healthier employees, which in theory, boosts the company's bottom-line, having a double-prong impact on both costs (e.g. sick days) and revenues (e.g. missed targets due to sick days), improving profitability.
Surprisingly, employers might even save money as the scheme usually takes advantage of Employers National Insurance savings made through payroll when a salary sacrifice deduction is made. And this is a real cost-saving feature that could save businesses thousands of pounds per year.
There are instances however where an organisation might want to run a scheme (or part of it) in-house; especially if it involves holiday trading, car parking, performance-based bonus schemes or any transaction that would involve either sensitive information or intra-staff interaction.
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