If you run or operate a small business, then you know that part of your responsibility is dealing with employee benefits. It is crucial that you offer the right combination of benefits that offers value to employees without breaking the bank.  If you don’t offer enough you could alienate employees, but if you offer too much you may reduce your profits too much to make it feasible.  The tips below will help you strike the right balance to ensure that you are promoting employee happiness and company success:

Family and Medical Leave

A important benefit to offer employees is family and medical leave.  While it’s required under the FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act), you could offer additional time than what’s required as an additional perk.  This allows workers to see family members when they are sick, or enable them to tend to their medical issues. So, how much family leave does a business have to offer to stay FMLA compliant? To keep in compliance with FMLA requirements, you must hold an employee’s job open for twelve weeks of leave.


There’s no doubt about it, health insurance is important.  It has also become a major factor in attracting new and talented employees to your company.  While it has become standard for companies to offer health insurance, it’s not always a deal breaker if you don’t. But realize that some employees may use this as a critical decision-making metric when comparing companies to work for.

Trips and Vacation

Paid time off is becoming more and more important to employees trying to strike the ideal work/life balance.  Some companies offer paid vacation time, others don’t.  Whether you offer this to your employees will often depend on the type of employee (full or part time), their length of time with your company, and whether you can afford the expense.

Food and Transportation

It might be tempting to set yourself apart by offering paid transportation, parking, or lunches. However, this can lead to some employees depending on you a little too much.  You wouldn’t cause them hardship by requiring them to cover these things on their own, however there are alternatives that might be a win/win.  One solution is letting some employees work from home.  It could be a much desired change for your employee, and could help you to decrease overhead on office space.

Overall Compensation

Ultimately, each benefit combined with salary should be taken into account as the overall compensation for your employees. You want to make sure that they have the most value, which doesn’t necessarily equate to the most cash. For instance, if you can’t afford a substantial pay raise you could consider casual Fridays, team outings, or other culture-builders that allow employees to improve their lifestyle without costing the company money.


At the end of the day, you should strive to treat your employees well while also balancing the company’s interests. This lets you enjoy profits even when times are tough, and your workers can meet their needs at the same time.