HR Reality Check: Benefits Will Be Taken for Granted

by Frank Roche on August 16, 2010

in Benefits

Psst: This one’s for my HR friends.

You know that cool new benefit you’re offering. The one that everyone’s talking about?

Next year, everyone will take it for granted.

Doesn’t matter what it is — free dog walking, free jelly beans, free massages — things will happen in three distinct phases:

  1. In the beginning, employees will notice and comment on it. They’ll be thankful. You’ll be pleased. Everyone will be happy.
  2. Somewhere along the way, some will start to overdo it. Take advantage. They won’t care about the spirit of the idea. Guidelines won’t help.
  3. And not too long afterwards, those benefits that you spend a fortune on and think are really cool will be taken for granted. In fact, see what happens if you try to scale them back even a little bit.

Here’s the reality check: Think long and hard about offering benefits. Think about their value. Because once you give them you can’t take them back. And you’re stuck paying the bill.

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