21 Free Employee Benefits: A Guide for Managers

What are free employee benefits? Free employee benefits are incentives that cost employers little-to-no money to offer to their employees. These don’t include things like health insurance, disability leave, dental insurance, child care coverage, 401K plans, life insurance or vision insurance.

According to a recent industry study, 48% of workers would consider the company perks and work incentives, such as the availability of snacks, when choosing their next position. This is also true when working with temporary employees because benefits will probably determine whether they stay after the task is completed.

And there are compelling commercial reasons to provide a recognition program as a benefit to employees. One significant one is that a worker who doesn’t receive praise at work is twice as likely to declare they’ll quit in the coming year (likely to work for a rival employer). Don’t let it happen to you!.

Free Employee Benefit

Why are they good for workplace morale?

Free employee perks can boost workplace morale in a variety of ways. Here are a few instances of how these advantages could enhance your workplace:

What are free employee benefits?

Free employee benefits are incentives that employers can provide to their staff for little to no cost. These do not include benefits like medical insurance, disability payments, dental coverage, child care assistance, 401K plans, life insurance, or vision coverage.

21 free and low-cost employee benefits

Here are 21 examples of free and inexpensive employee benefits you can implement at your place of business:

1. Weekly yoga

You can create a temporary yoga studio for your staff to use if you have an outdoor area or conference room that isn’t frequently used. To accomplish this, you might need to pay a local yoga instructor to lead 30- to 1-hour-long classes for staff members during lunch or after work. For staff members who don’t already have them, you might also need to purchase yoga mats. Send a survey to your staff to determine whether they would be interested in the idea before you implement it. You could also try it out first to see if your staff members are interested in this benefit.

2. Gym memberships

Free gym memberships or discounts for a nearby gym can promote employee health and well-being at a minimal cost for smaller businesses with fewer than 100 workers. Make inquiries about pricing, group discounts, and company offerings at nearby gyms before deciding whether to provide this benefit.

3. Local store discounts

Businesses can find local discounts at restaurants, grocery stores, dry cleaners, and other stores using a number of discount apps and other services. Employees will feel valued and benefit from cost-saving benefits for their personal activities if you give them discounts or coupons for nearby businesses.

4. Mileage reimbursement

Mileage reimbursement programs assist workers who commute a long distance or travel for work in lowering the costs associated with driving to and from work as well as to meetings or conferences. Giving employees gas cards as payment for the monthly amount they spend on gas will help you achieve this. If you prefer a less expensive choice, you can offer gas cards with enough money on them to cover the cost of one tank of gas.

If you give each employee one card each month, you can still save them $20 to $30 that they can use for something else even if you can’t cover a month’s worth of gas-related expenses.

5. Tickets to events

Giving employees the chance to go to a sporting event, concert, or food festival is a fantastic low-cost benefit to boost productivity and generate excitement at work. The number of tickets you buy will depend on how much money is available in your company’s budget. Then determine how to decide the winner(s). You could require interested staff members to put their names in a hat for a random draw, or you could base it on the three staff members with the highest quotas for the month.

6. Weekly lunch buffets or takeout options

Offering a free lunch buffet or takeout option each week is another fantastic low-cost way to improve your workplace and employee satisfaction. You might be able to offer this service every day, depending on your budget, but you could also schedule it for a specific day of the week. This lessens the stress of packing a lunch for the day and gives employees something to look forward to.

7. Gift cards

The advantage of gift cards is that you can choose a value that fits within your spending limit. For instance, a $10 gift certificate to a nearby coffee shop Employees can receive gift cards for their efforts or for exceeding performance standards. During the holiday season, gift cards are another excellent choice for showing your appreciation for your staff.

8. Bring your dog to workday

Create a “bring your dog to work” or “bring your cat to work” day for your staff (preferably on different days) to make your workplace more enjoyable and welcoming. You can schedule these events on more relaxed workdays. Send out an anonymous survey to see if your staff would like it before you make it official. Before moving on, make sure to get their opinions because some people might have allergies or other exceptions.

9. Guest speakers

Employees are inspired by guest speakers, who also spice up the workday. These people typically work in the same sector as your company and can provide employees with a variety of insights. Through personal websites or professional networking sites, you can get in touch with your guest speakers. You can talk about mental health, work-life balance, career advice, or industry statistics. In any case, inviting guest speakers demonstrates to your staff that you are concerned about their personal and professional growth.

10. Summer Fridays

Some businesses provide their employees with summer Fridays from May or June to August. This essentially means that workers leave the office at 2:30 p m. or 3:00 p. m. It gives them enough time to leave for home before rush hour, begin their road trips for vacation, or simply take in the summertime. Summer Fridays can boost productivity as well because staff members must maintain their work ethic to finish tasks earlier.

11. Mental health resources

Although you might not be able to offer employees in-house counseling services, you can give them a way to get support and treatment for mental health issues. Consult your HR department to create a strategy for achieving this. You may be able to assist employees in locating providers and making appointments depending on the health care benefits you provide. You can at the very least assist them in locating free or inexpensive options nearby.

12. Casual dress codes

Some workplaces permit casual attire every day, while others only allow it on Fridays. In either case, allowing workers to come to work in casual attire as opposed to business attire offers a change of pace and serves as an excellent motivator for them to meet their productivity targets.

13. Monthly company dinners or events

Renting a portion of a restaurant, registering your business for a group wine tasting, or holding a business picnic in a public park are a few examples of how to do this. These gatherings provide employees with something to anticipate and allow them to get to know their coworkers better on a personal level. This may enhance your staff’s capacity for collaboration and job satisfaction.

14. Unlimited PTO

Employees who work a set number of hours each week are entitled to unlimited paid time off. For instance, an employee receives an extra day of paid time off for each full week worked. Instead of having a fixed number of days they can take off work, this method of scheduling time off enables employees to take vacations or rest days throughout the year. By providing unlimited PTO, you reduce employee burnout and improve the work environment at your company.

15. Employee clubs

Create official employee clubs based on employee interests and hobbies. This could be a walking club, gardening club, sports watching club, or book of the month club. Employee relationships are strengthened as a result, and they begin to connect their work with their interests. Send out an anonymous survey to see which concepts garner the most interest in creating employee clubs. then collaborate with departmental managers and staff to choose club leaders.

16. Trivia nights

You and your staff have the chance to collaborate outside of the office by participating in trivia nights at neighborhood eateries, bars, or wineries. You might be able to form a trivia team for nothing, only paying for food and drink, depending on the event you choose.

17. Company day trips

Consider planning a day trip on a Friday or Saturday where your staff can bring their families as a reward for their hard work. A visit to a museum, aquarium, beach, hiking trail, or other nearby attraction is one example of this.

18. Feedback opportunities

Employees may appreciate receiving a well-designed feedback channel where they can express their needs, wants, and ideas for improvement. This demonstrates the value you place in their suggestions. Because employers have a place to express their criticism, it also lowers the rate of employee turnover.

19. Telecommuting options

Employees who choose to telecommute can choose to spend some of their workweeks in the office and some of it at home. Employees can attend to personal needs, switch up their work environment, and avoid travel in hazardous weather conditions by having options for telecommuting.

20. Flexible work schedules

Flexible work schedules permit an employee to begin or end their shift earlier or later than the customary 9:00 a.m. m. to 5:00 p. m. work schedule. This enables workers to keep personal commitments, avoid rush-hour traffic, and attend appointments in the morning or afternoon.

21. Coffee Mondays

Make Mondays more enjoyable and productive by taking your staff out for coffee. Each employee should send their order the Friday before so that it can be ready when workdays begin. This gives workers something to look forward to on a Monday and demonstrates to them that you understand what it’s like to return to work after the weekend.


What are some unique employee benefits?

101 Unique Employee Benefit Ideas to Attract the Best Talent
  • 401K Matching. …
  • Student Loan Repayment Plans. …
  • Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) …
  • Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) …
  • HSA employer match contribution: …
  • Discounts on Travel + Ridesharing. …
  • Discounted Family Cell Phone Plans. …
  • Tuition Reimbursement.

What are the 4 major types of employee benefits?

Medical insurance, life insurance, disability insurance, and retirement plans are the four main categories of employee benefits that many employers provide. Below, we’ve provided a general definition of each of these categories of employee benefits.

What benefits do employees receive?

The most common types of employee benefits offered today are:
  • Medical insurance.
  • Life insurance.
  • Disability insurance.
  • Retirement contributions and pension plans.

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