Competition for architecture and engineering talent is fierce. Pay is an important key to attracting and retaining top talent, but there are other important compensation-related factors that matter, too. To hire and keep top talent, it’s important for architecture and engineering firms to offer compensation packages that include competitive pay and a comprehensive benefits plan that meets — or exceeds — employee expectations.
Use our guide to simplify creating a benefits package.
Health Insurance for Architects & Engineers
According to the results of an employee benefits survey released by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) in 2021, health insurance is at the top of the list of desired employee benefits. A total of 90% of respondents rated health insurance as very important or extremely important.
Employees don’t all have the same health insurance needs — some may prefer the lower premiums of a high deductible health plan (HDHP). Others may want a copay-based preferred provider organization (PPO) plan with a higher premium, or one of the other plan options that exist. To offer a truly competitive total rewards package, it’s important to offer access to a variety of health insurance plans. This allows each team member to select an option that meets their needs.
The idea of offering multiple group health insurance plans may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. By working with a Professional Employer Organization (PEO), you can get access to high-quality health insurance plans typically only available in the large group market.
The best third-party solutions help simplify the complicated process of finding and organizing available plan information so employers don’t have to dedicate internal resources to negotiating contracts or administrative tasks. It can be as simple as opting-in to the plans you want to make available to your employees. Some solutions even assist with benefits administration, handling initial enrollment and annual open enrollment via an HR software platform, along with related administrative tasks.
401(k) Plans for Architects & Engineers
The SHRM employee benefits survey also indicates that retirement savings is another very important benefit to employees — more than half of respondents rated retirement as extremely important or very important. This speaks directly to the importance of offering a 401(k) plan that employees can contribute to via payroll deduction.
As with health insurance, the idea of setting up and administering a 401(k) program can seem overwhelming, especially for small firms. But that doesn’t have to be the case. This is another area where working with a PEO can make it possible for even smaller employers to offer the same access to benefits as larger employers without having to divert resources from core business operations to administrative tasks.
With the right platform, it can be easy for employers to integrate a retirement savings plan into their benefits offerings so enrollment and contributions can be processed through the software. With some providers, you can even get access to participate in a cost-effective multiple employer plan (MEP) designed with the needs of small businesses in mind.
Mental Health & Wellness
Health insurance and retirement savings have long been considered basic components to include in employee benefits plans. Mental health and wellness benefits have also become increasingly important and are highly valued by employees. In the SHRM employee benefits survey, more than 60% of respondents rated wellness benefits as extremely important or very important. Architecture and engineering are known to be high-stress fields of work, so it’s definitely a good idea to provide benefits that address overall wellbeing.
Examples of mental health and wellness you can consider making available to your employees include:
Teletherapy services - Online counseling and therapy services like Talkspace make it easier to access mental health support.
Employee assistance program (EAP) - Providers like Health Advocate offer advocacy and assistance services for navigating mental health, work/life and healthcare challenges.
Fitness memberships - Flexible memberships like those offered through ClassPass provide discounted access to thousands of fitness centers nationwide so employees can prioritize fitness wherever they are.
These are just a few key benefits and perks related to mental health and wellness that employers can offer their employees. Many other options exist, like Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) and Health Savings Accounts (HSA), so it’s important to consider everything that’s available to you so you’re creating the best benefits offering possible.
Benefits Matter to Architects & Engineers
For firms that want to successfully compete for (and keep!) top architecture and engineering talent, there is no substitute for offering a comprehensive total rewards package designed with the needs of your workforce in mind. This directly impacts your ability to attract and retain talent in these high-demand industries. Working with Justworks can help simplify the administrative aspects of payroll and HR, while also providing you access to the same quality benefits as larger firms — all without taking your attention away from building a successful architecture or engineering practice.
This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, legal or tax advice. If you have any legal or tax questions regarding this content or related issues, then you should consult with your professional legal or tax advisor.