Tired of Administering Benefits? 4 Perks Workers Can Manage With an App.
Let’s be honest: HR is a pain. Especially at growing companies, there's an almost endless number of forms to fill out, regulations to parse and roles to fill.
That mess of administrative work is why HR management outsourcing is on the rise. When there are sales to make and products to build, leaders simply don’t have time to deal with arcane laws and health insurance issues. With that said, many young companies can’t afford to hire HR partners. Founders in those circumstances may be stuck processing payroll themselves, but they can lean on technology for one of the most tedious areas of HR: benefits administration.
If your team wants new-age benefits like office pool tables -- or hairy, traditional ones like health insurance -- you’ll have to handle those yourself. But there are plenty of other perks they can manage straight from their smartphones:
Manually tracking paid time off might work when you’ve got one or two workers, but it’s a headache and a half across an entire team. Not only do leaders not have time to answer questions like “How much time off do I have left?” but they risk PTO overlaps that result in staffing shortages.
Although managers still need to approve PTO requests submitted through automated systems, tools like BambooHR let employees make requests via email and their mobile devices. BambooHR also offers a Who’s Out Calendar, which shows at a glance which team members are scheduled for time off when. Best of all, BambooHR can be customized to accommodate policies like unlimited PTO, location- or department-specific accrual rates and paternity leave.
2. Student loan repayment
Collectively, Americans hold nearly $1.4 trillion in student loan debt, averaging more than $37,000 per borrower. To attract new grads burdened by debt, companies are offering repayment benefits. But because of the sensitivity of financial data, employees aren’t always comfortable sharing their student loan details. On top of that, every borrower’s debt is structured differently, which makes an across-the-board benefit difficult to administer.
To simplify debt repayment, FutureFuel.io’s mobile app aggregates loans into a dashboard that integrates with popular HR platforms. Employers can make monthly payments toward team members’ debts, and employees themselves can round up payments directly from their paychecks. And in some cases, FutureFuel.io’s refinancing marketplace means both you and your indebted grads can save thousands of dollars on interest across the lifetime of a loan.
3. Wellness coaching
Studies show mixed results on the effectiveness of employee wellness programs, but employers clearly see enough value to continue offering them. What employers don’t find valuable about wellness programs, unfortunately, is the amount of time it takes to administer them. Who has time to host a fitness challenge or a seminar on healthy eating when they’ve got a company to grow?
Instead of trying to lead a wellness program yourself, set workers up with a platform like CoreHealth. The companion MyWellApp offers an activity log, a step counter and updates on company-specific challenges. Users receive educational content that offers tips on everything from stretching to cooking methods. They can also access partner services, such as smoking cessation programs and life skills coaching, discreetly and without a referral from their healthcare provider.
4. Identity theft protection
Although U.S. data breaches declined modestly last year, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center, the reported number of exposed consumer records more than doubled. Sooner or later, one of those records will belong to a member of your team. When that happens, you don’t want to be dragged into the process of helping an employee regain control of all his or her breached accounts.
To help team members manage their own identities, providers like Identity Force have started offering the service as an employee benefit. Identity Force’s mobile app provides a feed of alerts to notify users when their bank accounts, credit cards, email addresses, medical records and even social media profiles are compromised.
When it comes to employee benefits, there’s not always an app for that. But when benefits providers do offer self-service systems, take advantage of them. More flexibility for your team, and more time for you: That’s the bottom line of app-based benefits.