Voluntary benefits are benefits offered in addition to employees’ core compensation and benefits packages that employees can pick and choose from. Many employers consider expanding their voluntary benefits to compensate for increasing health care costs, which is a major factor in the recent trend toward providing a wider array of voluntary benefits. Voluntary benefits cost employers little to nothing to offer while making compensation packages more attractive to employees.
Voluntary benefits can be either insurance or non-insurance products. For the voluntary insurance benefits, employees can take advantage of lower group rates, the convenience of payroll deductions and, in some cases, pre-tax deductions. Many voluntary insurance products have portable coverage, so employees can keep their policies if they end up leaving your company. For most voluntary insurance offerings, employees pay 100 percent of the premiums.
Non-insurance voluntary benefits may also be offered to add extra value to an employee’s benefits package. Many of these benefits are designed to offer simplicity, convenience or money-saving options to various aspects of employees’ lives. For example, an employee discount program helps employees save money on a variety of items and services simply for working at your company.