Voluntary benefits have changed rapidly over the past 15 years, as benefits that employees would have traditionally bought for themselves are now readily available through their workplaces. Kimberley Dondo reports

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There has been a change in what is included in workplace benefits, and also how they are offered.

The traditional offerings may still be there, but the real growth has been in a different type of proposition – the voluntary benefit. These fall into two broad categories – extra benefits in a package that the employee may contribute towards, and a discount set-up where the individual receives some form of reward as a result of making a purchase.

The huge advantages of this type of benefit is that it offers massive choice for the staff member at a minimal cost to their employer.

We are rounding up what’s on the market in our six-part A – Z…

MOTOR INSURANCE

There has been a new evolution of traditional benefits being considered in the employee benefits market, with motor insurance being one of them. Aon, for example, can provide a fixed price motor policy for a company.

NEGOTIATED LOCAL DISCOUNTS

This type of discount could be at a local independent gym, garage or perhaps even the high street butcher. Good internal promotion is essential to ensure employees use them, and increasing volume can help secure even larger discounts.

OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH

Workplace occupational health gives staff access to professional specialist advice and provides direct help to staff members with a range of physical and mental health conditions. In return, employers can expect staff to be more productive and take fewer sick leave days.

PERSONAL ACCIDENT SCHEMES

Personal accident schemes provide a tax-free lump sum if an employee suffers an accident that causes death, permanent injury or a spell in hospital. This helps to provide employees with more financial protection and may include the option of family members joining the plan.