04/18/2012 Although high unemployment rates may be advantageous to employers, there is one important issue that may hamper their abilities to obtain the best employees. That issue is health care benefits. Look at any company offering benefits, and compare their turnover rates to those of companies with mediocre benefits. The results show a consistent advantage for employers with good benefits. Google and Lowe’s are well-known companies with many locations. Although their products are very different from one another, the one thing they have in common is unique health benefits. Google has one of the lowest turnover rates of any company in the world, and their benefits include an on-site doctor, a physical therapy clinic and a chiropractic clinic. While they do not pay for employee health insurance, workers are able to use the on-site resources freely. Lowe’s is a great place for anyone with a family history of cardiac disease. They offer great benefits with a special heart surgery perk. Anyone who must undergo surgery enjoys a zero-dollar bill. Transportation, lodging, copay amounts and all other charges are covered. There are several other companies that offer great benefit packages with unique features. Many offer on-site care in place of health insurance coverage. Others offer decent health plans with physical benefits such as gym memberships, discounts on wellness aids and many other perks. One thing all of these employers have in common is that they go above and beyond the normal group benefit plan by offering one or more unique additions. Not all employers have adequate space to install a free on-site gym, and many companies do not have enough money to keep a doctor on staff. It may not be possible for small businesses to pay for every employee’s heart surgery. However, every employer can learn from the examples of Google, Lowe’s and the many other companies offering unique benefits. Giving employees paid gym memberships, offering a free annual wellness retreat or giving vouchers for health food stores are all affordable additions to any benefits package. There are certainly plenty of other ways to stand above the competition. No employer wants to lose key employees, and it is even worse to lose employees to competitors because of health benefits. Turnover is expensive, so consider the cost of losing employees in comparison with the cost of offering a more enticing benefits package. Research consistently shows that healthier employees are more focused, reliable and productive. Every company needs these types of individuals for optimal success, so it makes sense to invest a little more in a benefits package that will make healthy living an easy task for employees. Discuss what plan options are available with an agent, and start making positive changes for a more successful future.