Employment Benefits and Work Environment

SAS – Fortune’s Best Companies to Work For

The work environment provided by the top companies on the Fortune’s Best Companies to Work For list is focused on making the employees satisfied. Through an offering of perks, employment benefits, and an appropriate work environment, these firms attract top talent and ensure a high level of productivity (“Fortune 100 best,” 2018). However, a critical question arises of why most businesses do not attempt similar trends to become competitive. Cost remains the biggest concern for extensive implementations of readily available perks and amenities to the staff. Instead, the incentive is offered by raising salaries and bonuses for achieved targets as a motivational factor for employees (Gerhart, Milkovich, & Newman, 2014). However, the industry has shown that in the modern workforce, traditional methods of employee engagement such as salary hikes do not guarantee results or inherently incentivize employee satisfaction (Crowley, 2013). This leads to companies to consider various management and work environment practices, but it is a concept which cannot be universally applied to every business.

The cost of offering perks increases with the size of the business. Furthermore, substantial benefits such as health care are increasing in price annually. Many of the well-known companies offering amenities and perks have significantly high profits or capital investment in comparison to the size of their workforce. In order to maintain a sense of equality and justice, perks and benefits must be offered to everyone, which becomes logistically and financially detrimental for companies with thousands of employees or workers that do not provide enough value.

This leads to the underlying reason for the difference between the top firms on the Fortune 100 list and others: company culture. Business is a for-profit enterprise, and many managers see employees, particularly at lower levels as expendable and easily replaceable human capital. A focus on increasing company finances is not necessarily a negative aspect, and it is true that many businesses cannot afford employee benefits or have a business model which relies on strict operational hours. However, companies can offer perks based on their availability of resources or type of business. It is based on the inherent workplace culture that either supports employees as human beings or seeks to abuse the position to make a profit.

Recruitment and Retention

As indicated in the previous discussion, monetary compensation has lost its traditional appeal to employees if the workplace is not desirable. However, as the primary purpose of a job, compensation is still a critical factor that affects recruitment and retention in a company. Compensation includes both intrinsic value (personal satisfaction) and extrinsic value (salary and benefits) which contribute to an employee’s career choice, motivation, and productivity. Compensation is one of the primary expenses in an organization’s budget and remains a point that most employees significantly care about. This highlights a crucial necessity for any business to determine a compensation strategy which is competitive, aligns with values, and appropriately fits its employees (Gerhart, Milkovich, & Newman, 2014).

In terms of personal, professional experience, from hourly jobs as a teenager to current employment, it is rare to see companies formulate a compensation strategy to ensure retention. For low-level employees, there are often a variety of available options regarding recruitment which leads to companies offering the most basic compensation packages. The focus falls on management and executive positions. However, in my experience, high turnover, even for low-level management, has been a significant and costly issue for any type of business. Employees usually adhere to specific reasons when choosing to leave an organization, including dissatisfaction, better alternatives, predetermined plan for career development, or a critical situation. In some way or another, all of these are inherently tied to compensation (Society for Human Resource Management, 2017). A company should focus to be competitive on the market in compensation and offer rewards that are based explicitly on retention. In turn, this leads to job satisfaction and other factors which could reduce turnover.

References

Crowley, M. (2013). How SAS became the world’s best place to work. Fast Company. Web.

Fortune 100 best. (2018). Fortune. Web.

Milkovich, G., Newman, J., & Gerhart, B. (2014). Compensation (11th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Companies.

Society for Human Resource Management. (2017). Managing for employee retention. Web.