HR Benefits

Once you have great employees on board, how do you keep them from jumping ship? One simple way is by offering an excellent benefits package.

Heading the list of must-have benefits is medical insurance, however many job applicants also demand a retirement plan, disability insurance, amongst other perks. Basic research shows retaining and aligning employees to the company’s goals are a key performance indicator for a company’s successful growth.

Benefit Basics for the US

The law requires employers to provide employees with certain benefits. You must:

  • Give employees time off to vote, serve on a jury and perform military service.
  • Comply with all workers' compensation requirements.
  • Withhold FICA taxes from employees' paychecks and pay your own portion of FICA taxes, providing employees with retirement and disability benefits.
  • Pay State and Federal unemployment taxes, thus providing benefits for unemployed workers.
  • Contribute to State short-term disability programs in states where such programs exist.
  • Comply with the Federal Family and Medical Leave (FMLA).

You are not required to provide:

  • Retirement plans
  • Health plans (except in Hawaii)
  • Dental or vision plans
  • Life insurance plans
  • Paid vacations, holidays or sick leave

In reality, however, most companies offer some or all of these optional benefits to stay competitive.

Most employers provide paid holidays for what is referred to as Statutory Holidays. These vary from Country to Country.  In general, the following are true for most Western nations:  New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day are all paid Holidays.