While working on Stable, we’ve spoken with over 300 distributed companies about their benefits and perks programs. We’re often surprised and inspired by what we learn, hear and see.
Care Packages, Coffee Allowances, Accounting Services — distributed companies are getting quite creative with their benefits and perks offerings. So creative, that we decided to put together a list of 16 of our favorite benefits and perks for remote teams.
Buckle Up :)
From monitors to desk chairs to printers, when a team member doesn’t go into an office everyday they lose access to equipment and supplies that may be taken for granted. Providing these types of items — both the obvious and the non-obvious — is a sure fire way to ensure your team can work productively.
Hiring remotely doesn’t always mean working from home — many people enjoy getting out of the house to reduce distraction, find inspiration, and change scenery. For these types of people, we’ve seen providing access to a coworking space is a great and popular solution. They may find a much needed community of people there as well.
Many companies with physical offices provide snacks, coffee, meals or even fully stocked fridges to ensure their team has the energy for their best work. A great way to reproduce this experience for remote team members is through a grocery or meal plan stipend, so they too can be fueled and ready to go.
Spotty video calls? Dropped Slack messages? High speed internet is probably THE most important benefit a company can provide to a remote team member. The internet is their direct line into the rest of your company, and a poor connection can be detrimental to productivity and morale.
We were surprised by how many companies send physical care packages to their remote teams. Whether it’s a swag pack for onboarding, a favorite box of snacks for birthdays, or a thoughtful present for promotions, physical touch points are important when you do not see someone everyday!
For those that work remotely, the line between being at work and not at work is always blurry, and it often results in longer hours than in-office peers. Providing a wellness benefit for access to local gyms, yoga classes, meditation apps, massages and more is an especially good way to encourage remote folks to unplug, reset and refresh everyday.
One of the many reasons a person joins a company is to grow as an individual. Remote team members can find this more challenging because of a lack of face-to-face time with peers that others may experience in office. A great way to ensure your remote team continues to develop and thrive is with an L&D benefit. Whether they’d like to use this towards Udemy courses, at their local book store, or for a conference in their industry, simply giving access to these resources goes a long way to further their professional growth.
If your remote team member works from home everyday, it’s likely their space will get messy. We’ve seen companies offer to provide cleaning services to their remote teams, the same way they provide cleaning services in their own physical office so that their space isn’t a distraction and they can focus on what matters.
Whether a team member needs to get out of the house for a bit, or find a place to work from for the day, providing a daily cup of coffee can go a long way towards showing you care. :)
Working from home while also taking care of children is difficult. Parents appreciate help looking after their kids or being able to enroll them in an afterschool program. Covering or subsidizing this care is a great way to communicate your support to team members that are also parents.
One of the easiest benefits to provide your team members that work remotely is flexible hours. Whether they need to pick their kids up from school, run to the store, or are just in a different time zone, communicating an understanding of their working habits can be a powerful way to earn trust and buy in.
There’s no replacement for meeting someone in person, and that’s why most remote teams have company wide retreats at least once a year. Whether you decide to go to an exotic location, or hunker down in a city that’s closest to most, meeting people face-to-face is an important and powerful way to create a real sense of community within your company.
Happy hours don’t need to be in person! Organizing small cross team video calls at the end of the week is a great way to encourage your team to meet and engage with people they normally wouldn’t. And if you’re feeling extra generous, you can always cover the drinks. :)
Remote team members often encounter non-standard tax situations for a variety of reasons — they are based in a location different from where the company is incorporated, they are not classified as employees, etc. Providing accounting services to these individuals is a thoughtful and effective way to ease the bookkeeping complications that may arise from working remotely.
Though non-obvious, remote team members that travel to a coworking space, coffee shop or other area actually do have a commute. Providing a transportation benefit in this case can and does make a lot of sense.
Working remotely, especially in the first few months, can be an isolating experience. Organizing a more formalized lunch buddy program is a good way to make sure new team members are getting exposure to the broader organization in a fun and constructive way!
We love how creative distributed companies are getting with their benefits and perks programs! Have a benefit or perk you’d like to share with us? Leave a comment or send an email to hello@useStable.com and we’ll be sure to feature it in our next post.
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Disclaimer: Stable is not a legal or accounting firm, therefore we cannot provide legal or tax advice. You should consult legal and tax professionals for advice on how to meet ongoing obligations that apply to you and your company.