In addition to a salary, there are plenty of benefits people expect from their jobs.
For example, if you work in an office, you expect to have a computer and office supplies provided.
This is a bit different for remote work, though. There are several approaches you can take, but savvy companies offer remote staff plenty of benefits.
Your Options on How Much to Offer Remote Staff
There are two extremes with the supplies you offer remote staff.
You can give them everything they need to set up their virtual office. This could include a desk, chair, printer, laptop, phone, paper, pens, and more.
On the other end of the spectrum, you could provide nothing. This is typically called bring-your-own-device.
But most companies fall somewhere in the middle.
Some companies will give remote employees a laptop. In this case, the employees are responsible for everything else.
Others will give remote workers a stipend to buy the equipment they need.
Why It’s Smart to Offer Benefits and Supplies
Many companies are hesitant to offer benefits and supplies to remote workers. After all, this has upfront costs. However, you do wonders for happiness at work and goodwill.
If you make your employees happy, they are less likely to quit. Remember that turnover comes with costs such as training and lost productivity during the search.
Additionally, your employees will be more productive if they have the right supplies.
Think of the difference a slow computer could make in how much they could do in a day. Or just the reduced output if they dread having to work in an uncomfortable chair.
With that in mind, what are some of the resources you should offer your remote employees?
Basic Office Supplies and Technology
The first items on your list should be the basics that employees need to get their job done.
At the minimum, provide a laptop and the relevant accessories, like a mouse and keyboard. Or at least a stipend that would let them afford a laptop that can handle their job.
Ideally, you should provide even more. If you are able, offer desks, chairs, pens, notebooks, printers, and more.
An Internet Stipend
Yes, most people have the internet at home. But it can be costly. It also may not be fast enough to work efficiently.
Consider offering an internet stipend so employees can get the internet in the first place or upgrade their connection.
You may not think of it as a resource, but offering flexible work hours can do wonders.
It’ll let you expand your potential employee pool. You can appeal to people in other time zones. Or to parents who need to work when their kids sleep. Or people with other jobs as well.
It also lets remote employees work at the time that they will be the most productive. That can help your bottom line and reduce employee turn over.
Learning and Development Resources and Opportunities
It’s common for employers to offer employees ways to grow their skills. Consider offering it to remote employees as well.
Remember that having employees with more skills will benefit your company. Thanks to online courses, offering these opportunities is easier than ever before.
Health and Wellness Benefits or Stipend
There’s a good reason that many companies offer health and wellness programs. Things like gym memberships are common perks in some traditional companies. After all, healthy and happy employees are more productive and take fewer sick days.
You can offer this resource remotely in several ways. It can be a gym membership at a certain chain that is available in most places.
Or it can be an allowance or stipend to use towards exercise equipment or fitness programs. Consider something similar for nutritionists, massages, and more.
Just because your employees can work from home doesn’t mean you want them watching their kids as they work. This will dramatically cut into their productivity.
Make up for this and keep employees loyal by giving childcare benefits. You should also consider offering paid parental leave.
Most full-time employees expect to have insurance benefits with their job.
Make sure that you offer something like that to your remote workers as well. Even if they aren’t full-time, consider offering some subsidized insurance.
Branded Items (Swag)
Who doesn't love swag?
If you are already sending your remote workers something, throw in some branded items as well.
Branded laptop bags, shirts, water bottles, or coffee mugs are all great ideas. These will help them feel connected despite working remotely.
Some companies are starting to offer employees credits to internal swag stores. Employees get to use those credits on the gear and accessories that they really want.
And as a bonus, swag is free advertising for your brand if they go work in a coffee shop or somewhere else.
Since remote workers spend nearly all their time at home, you want to help make their time-off more interesting.
Consider offering subscriptions to help them relax. Maybe you can cover a streaming service.
Or you’ll order a subscription box with snacks delivered once a month.
Invest In Your Employees
By going remote, you are saving a ton of money on office space.
Invest some of this money to make your employees experience better.
Your employees will be happier and more motivated to continue to do great work.