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9 Employee Perk Ideas You’ll Want to Try

9 Employee Perk Ideas You’ll Want to Try

The success of your business relies entirely on your ability to recruit and hire top-level talent. Not only that, you have to do everything in your power to nurture that hire so they remain with your company long-term.

Unfortunately, this is something many business owners neglect and it continues to have a negative impact on their business until they do something about it. Offering traditional employee benefits definitely helps attract the talent you need, but it’s often not enough in today’s landscape.

Don’t worry, we have you covered with some amazing ideas for unique employee benefits that aren’t offered everywhere. They’re a way to separate yourself from the competition and incentivize recruits to show interest in your company.

Let’s take a look:

1.   Education

We know what you’re thinking right now, “I don’t have to pay for my employee’s tuition, do I?” The good news is no, unless you want to. While it would certainly be enticing to anyone interested in a job and an education, it’s not necessary.

Instead, you should consider certifications, specific courses, and extracurricular training that you might see as beneficial to the employee’s ability to do their job efficiently. If you offer to pay for it, they’re more likely to do it without hesitation.

2.   Create the Ultimate Break Room

Let’s be honest, all work with limited play is difficult to pitch to anyone in this modern era. If you truly want to win over recruits, creating a dedicated space in the office or warehouse for employees during break hours can do a lot for morale and productivity.

Not only will your employees be more excited about coming to work and getting started, but they’ll continue to perform at their best throughout the day since they’re being given a true break as a reward.

3.   New Parents

No, you won’t be offering to give your employees new parents. You will, however, be giving your employees greater benefits when becoming parents. Since we can all agree that juggling a newborn and a job at the same time is difficult, you can win recruits over by offering extended parental leave.

It’ll give recruits the sense that they can stay within the company long-term, especially since most people plan on starting and growing their family at some point in their life.

4.   Do You Love Pets?

Let’s be honest, there’s something about having a pet around that helps boost morale and improve the overall vibe in a room -- any room. That’s why introducing a “bring your pet to work day” in your office can be extremely beneficial.

It can something you do yearly like “bring your child to work day,” or it can be something you do more frequently, sort of like “casual Fridays.” Either way, you’re going to make your employees extremely happy when that day comes.

5.   Discounts Always Work

Whether you’re a business with a product or a service, offering discounts and coupons to your employees is another gret way to entice them to work for you. Especially in this day and age, everyone is eager to save money whenever they get an opportunity to.

It’ll also give them a reason to try your product or service, meaning they’ll be more involved in the company overall and have experience on the other end of the spectrum (as a customer). You can also give similar discounts to family members and referrals.

6.   Time-Off

Things happen in everyone’s life at different times and they don’t always come with a warning. Other times, employees just want to take a break from everything and leave on vacation for a week. Either way, paid time-off becomes a blessing for these individuals.

Offering PTO benefits to your employees shows them that you care about their well-being. It shows you want them to stay their best at all times, even when life throws a curveball -- and if they need that break, they don’t have to take a financial hit as well.

7.   Health & Wellness

Part of making sure your employees stay healthy year-round is making sure they have access to gyms, workout equipment, and even personal training. Employees that workout regularly are going to be healthier, which is good for your business because it means they’re giving you and your customers their best every day.

Reimbursing employees for these things goes a long way. Of course, you’ll need to set limits to what is included, but simply offering them a partial payment would help. Plus, it’ll incentivize them to use it more often.

8.   Company-Wide Events

Anytime you have a team-building day, company-wide event, or retreat, you immediately start to grab the attention of recruits. Just the thought of being a part of those activities will make them not want to miss it. Plus, it gives you an opportunity to showcase the personality and character behind your business.

When employees get together outside of work and bond on a more personal level, they feel moer comfortable working with each other and it often leads to an increased performance out of them. They build a chemistry that you can’t find elsewhere.

9.   Everyone Needs Food

Who doesn’t love food? What if you were to start offering lunch to your employees or even snacks throughout the day? Not only would it keep employees happy, but they’ll be more energetic and have the fuel they need to get through the harsh demands of the work day.

A great way to do this is by offering snacks everyday, but also picking one day of the week where you buy lunch for everyone in the office. It gives them something to look forward to and shows you care about your employees -- something they’ll definitely take notice of.

Of course, these are just some employee perks you can introduce in your company to help attract, recruit, hire, and maintain a roster full of top-level talent. When you can gain that, you’ll start to see your business take shape and build a level of sustainability that sets everyone up for future success.

Paying Workers Without Paper Checks

Paying Workers Without Paper Checks

The COVID-19 pandemic has created a widespread of challenges for businesses of all sizes. Not only has it changed the way businesses think and act, but it has changed the demands of employees and consumers alike.

One of the things the pandemic has changed forever is the way employees are paid and how they receive their money. It’s clear your employees and their families are in a tough position right now and they need as much help as they can get.

Unfortunately, many employers are still utilizing paper checks on payday -- opposed to the wide range of options available today. In fact, paper checks are one of the least-preferred methods when getting paid and it’s time for businesses to take notice of it. 

So, why shouldn’t you use paper checks?

When business owners choose to pay their employees with paper checks, a majority of them don’t understand the process involved when printing the checks, placing them in envelopes, and sending them out. Not only does that require physical labor, but it requires time when dealing with shipping and handling.

As we’ve seen with the COVID-19 pandemic, physical labor is still difficult to manage and there isn’t even a guarantee that it’s available. In addition to that, employees need their money sooner than ever because a majority of them are living with their backs up against the wall.

When your business uses paper checks, it does more harm than good to the employee -- and even your business. It costs you money, it takes time, and employees are stuck waiting an unnecessary amount of time just to get paid for the work they’ve already completed. Some of them might have to pay a small fee just to access that money, especially if they don’t have a bank account.

If that’s not enough to persuade you to consider paying employees electronically, think about all the different hands -- as well as germs and potential viruses -- that touch the paper check before reaching your employees. With how important public health and safety is today, paper checks present far-greater risks than we once imagined. 

There’s a Better Option When Paying Workers

For the business owners out there that think paying their employees via paper checks or even cash is the only option when paying workers, we want you to think again. Paying them electronically is a much-more feasible option in today’s economy, putting you and your employees in a position to succeed short-term and long-term.

It shows your employees that you’re thinking about them and that their needs matter to your company. In an age where many employees feel like they’re not being heard or appreciated, this can go a long way -- not just for you, but for the rest of your employees and customers.

With so many different options out there, including direct deposit, individual pay cards exclusive to your payroll, mobile wallets, and even services like Zelle and PayPal. Desperate times cause for desperate measures and your employees would do anything to rid themselves of dealing with paper checks.

If you need assistance or guidance when switching from paper checks to electronic payments, Consultants In-A-Box is here to help. We’re experts when it comes to payroll, human resources, and accounting services for businesses of all sizes.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you and your business find the success you were imagining when you first opened up. One of our trained professionals will assist you immediately.



Creating the Best Employee Satisfaction Survey

Creating the Best Employee Satisfaction Survey

When’s the last time you wondered whether or not your employees are happy with their job? If it’s been a while -- or if you’ve never truly thought about it -- then there’s never been a better opportunity than right now.

In fact, this is something you must do regularly if you want to ensure your office or store promotes a comfortable and happy environment for your employees. Failure to do so results in a lack of productivity, lack of motivation, and overall lack of fulfillment from your employees.

You might be asking yourself, “How do I find out whether or not my employees are happy?” This is a common question we receive often and there’s one answer we give every single time -- an employee satisfaction survey.

It’s similar to the survey you send out to your customers, except this time it’ll be catered to your employees.

Finding Success With an Employee Satisfaction Survey

An employee satisfaction survey reveals a lot about how your employees feel about their job, their role with the company, the rest of the staff, the managers, the policies, and other ways they feel the business can do a better job at meeting standards. It’s necessary when growing and improving your company.

In fact, an employee satisfaction survey should be administered at least once per year. If your company has a high turnover rate, it might be best to do it more frequently -- of course, you’ll want to find the root of the problem as well. The survey will help, but it’ll only be the first step.

If you want the best results, try handing out an employee satisfaction survey every three months. Make it a part of your quarterly process and let your employees know to expect it. You can incentivize honest answers by eliminating the need to place a name at the top of the survey.

For those that are new to the employee satisfaction survey, we’re going to outline some of the most prominent questions you should consider adding to your survey. Including these will ensure you get as much insight as possible when collecting answers from employees. 

  • Do you feel you’re paid enough for the work we ask you to do?

One of the main reasons your employees show up to work everyday is because they need the paycheck to support themselves and their families. When they don’t feel they’re being paid enough, they’re bound to start searching for a job that pays better.

  • Do you feel heard when speaking with management?

When employees speak to upper management and even executives, they want to know their opinions or observations are being heard. You’d be surprised at how many great ideas come from lower-level employees -- all you have to do is listen once in a while.

  • Do you feel like the work you do is valuable to the overall vision of the company?

Every business has goals they want to accomplish, a vision they want to bring to life, and a reputation to uphold. As you continue to add employees to your team, it’s important to make sure each position is designed to contribute to that end goal -- otherwise your employees will feel like their effort doesn’t matter.

  • Are you happy with the potential to grow with this company?

Employees don’t want to jump from one job to the next their entire life. They want stability and sustainability just as much as any business owner. The problem is most businesses don’t encourage growth within the company.

Instead of focusing on outside hires all the time, see if there are any opportunities to promote existing employees first.

  • Would you say management invests enough time and energy into the employees here?

It’s important for management to listen to their employees, but it shouldn’t stop there. Management needs to turn that into action and show the employees that their ideas and thoughts matter. It’s easy to sit down and lend an ear, but it’s a different story when you start taking action.

  • Are you given all the tools and resources needed to do your job well? 

In order for employees to do their job correctly, effectively, and efficiently, they need the proper tools and resources made available to them whenever and wherever. The best way to determine what those tools and resources are is to ask the employee. In fact, it’s the only way to determine it, so don’t neglect it!

  • How likely are you to search for a new job in the near future?

Anytime your employees give you their two-weeks notice, it stings a little -- especially when they’ve been good to your company since being hired. This might be a difficult question to ask and a difficult one to answer, but it’ll often change the narrative in the office and give you an opportunity to make things better.

  • Are you happy with the work you do for this company?

One of the questions earlier talked about whether the employee feels their role is valuable to the vision of the company. This question is a little different because it’s designed to determine whether or not employees are doing the right work.

It’s important that they not only feel like they’re contributing, but that they’re happy in the way they’re contributing. You’d be surprised by how many employees in your company would perform better if they had a different role.

  • What do you have to say about the culture we’ve created here?

Whether you were trying to create one or not, every company has a culture that defines its core values, principles, and behavior. This culture is important because it’s what attracts employees and incentivizes them to stay with the company long-term. If you haven’t been monitoring the culture within your company, now’s the best time to start.

  • Is the work you do challenging or difficult at all throughout the day?

This question could be paired with the tools and resources question. It helps identify which departments and which positions are having the most difficulty doing their job effectively.

You’ll want to ask both questions because some employees might find their job difficult, but not know what would make it easier. They might feel they have the right tools and resources, yet still find it difficult.

  • How is your relationship with your coworkers?

Coworkers are asked to spend a lot of time together. Sometimes, they see each other more than they see their own families. With that being said, you want to make sure every employee that works for you is comfortable with each other. It’ll also help strengthen the culture with your company.

  • Do you ever feel pressured while working?

When employees are pressured or stressed over things that could’ve been prevented, it takes away from the quality of their work and the satisfaction they have when working for you. It’s best to promote a stress-free environment, but it’s also important to make sure employees have what they need to calm down when stress arrives.

  • How well do you think our company adapts to change?

There’s nothing stable about business. It’s constantly changing and business owners are constantly being asked to change with it. Those that fail to institute this change end up falling behind their competition and underachieving the goals they set for themselves. If you want stability, be prepared to change.

When you include the questions listed above in your next employee satisfaction survey, you’ll receive the answers you need to continue improving your company -- from top to bottom. You’ll know the areas that need to be addressed, but you’ll also know where your company’s strengths are.

If you need further help instituting an effective employee satisfaction survey, contact the professionals at Consultants In-A-Box today. We help businesses find room for improvement and can’t wait to do the same for you and your business!


Signs It’s Time For Payroll Help

Signs It’s Time For Payroll Help

New business owners are faced with a wide range of difficulties and obstacles when getting their feet on the ground, but most people won’t properly prepare themselves for the payroll process. It might seem easy in the beginning, but you’ll eventually be screaming for payroll help as your business grows.

The more employees you hire, the more difficult it becomes to manage and maintain your daily, weekly, and monthly payroll challenges. It’ll get to a point where you simply don’t have enough time in the day to focus on your responsibility as owner AND manage your company’s payroll.

While most owners find themselves in a pickle when forced to decide between the two, Consultants In-A-Box is here to change that perspective and provide reasonable solutions to your payroll challenges. We’ll become the payroll assistant you’ve always wanted!

When Is It Time for Help?

We assist you with every part of the payroll process -- not just the part where you pay your employees. New hire paperwork, W-2s, quarterly payroll taxes, and much more are required on a consistent basis, taking away even more of your time.

We’ve helped many companies -- just like yours -- solve their payroll issues and we understand the biggest warning signs when it comes to needing payroll help. Let’s take a look at some of those warning signs, that way you can avoid disaster with your own business.

1.   Late Payday & Tax Forms

Paying your employees late because you were too busy with other work or didn’t have enough time to process them sooner is unacceptable as a business owner. Your employees depend on receiving their hard-earned money on-time and won’t settle for anything less.

While timing is important with paychecks, it’s also important to the employee’s W2s and 1099s, which need to be sent out in a timely manner so the employee can file their taxes properly. Failing to send them on-time will surely lose your employee’s trust.

2.   Payroll Errors

Errors in payroll are never welcomed and put your employee in a tough spot. Spelling their name or address wrong on the check can cause delays when cashing the check. Furthermore, the wrong amount in the check leads to distrust and more delays.

If errors are plentiful when processing payroll, consider finding a payroll assistant or software. They’ll help cut down on the mistakes and ensure everything is handled properly and accurately.

3.   Missed Tax Deadlines

Constantly missing tax deadlines can result in some serious fees and charges against your business. These are an important part of owning a business and something most people aren’t aware of before they start a business.

The last thing you need is the IRS on your back. Talking with a professional ensures you know exactly how much to pay, when to pay it, and how to pay it so your business remains in good-standing with the IRS.

4.   Depleted Cash Flow

Cash flow is essential when processing payroll. Without the money, you can’t pay your employees. This is the worst case scenario when doing payroll because it brings the entire process to a halt -- even if you’re ready to complete it.

If you’re having issues in this area, payroll software can help you stay better organized and ensure you have the necessary funds when you need them. You won’t need to rely on loans to pay your employees anymore and can start to build a level of financial stability.

5.   Hourly Employees

Hourly employees present a wide range of difficulties without the right tools or resources. Especially in today’s digital world, technology is your best friend when taking control of your hourly payroll. If you’re having a tough time accurately keeping track of hourly employees, a payroll software or assistant helps you stay diligent.

At the end of the day, payroll should be an easy process for the owner that requires minimal work and more reviewing than anything. You shouldn’t be running into issues left and right. If you are, it’s time to search for some help -- and there’s no shame in that. It’s a smart move!

Are You Ready to Save Your Payroll?

A quality, smooth, and accurate payroll process is essential to a business. It keeps your financials in order, it keeps you prepared, and leads to more employee loyalty -- which benefits your business in so many more ways.

If you need help keeping everything in check, there are three quality options you can consider immediately -- outsourced professional, payroll software, or both.

The payroll software will make things easier for anyone, whether you’re taking care of the payroll yourself, already have a payroll team, or plan on hiring one. Outsourcing your payroll to a professional might cost money each month, but it’ll add time to your day and accuracy to your books.

Of course, the combination of both is what puts your business in the best position to succeed. Choosing a professional who knows your payroll software is important, but having a professional with their own solution is even better.

When you’re ready to save your payroll and prove to your employees that your company can be a reliable place to work, contact Consultants In-A-Box today to be connected with one of our highly-rated professionals.


How To Choose The Right Bookkeeping Software

How To Choose The Right Bookkeeping Software

Most small business owners aren’t considered experts at financial management. Since your business’ financials never stop, having to manage this yourself with ineffective tools can be frustrating and time-consuming. It’s what makes small business bookkeeping such a dread.

Finding the right bookkeeping software for your company is essential to maintaining an organized environment that limits mistakes and confusion. Below, we’re going to discuss some of the most important factors when determining the best bookkeeping software -- that way you can make a more-informed decision.

Finding the Best Bookkeeping Software

First and foremost, you need to understand what your business needs. Some businesses need something simple, while others need something complex. Some companies might be looking for something that can support both if they plan on scaling the business in the future.

Either way, you need to have a deep understanding of this before you start looking at software or consultants. It’ll help you narrow down your options initially so you can focus on the things that separate the best bookkeeping software from everything else.

In order to determine that, there are five major factors you need to consider -- customization, simplicity, accessibility, customer support, and integration. To limit any confusion with these factors, we’ll break them all down one-by-one for you.

1.   Customization & Personalization

When it comes to small business bookkeeping, every business is unique and they all have their own way of operating. In order for a bookkeeping software to be of any assistance to your needs, it needs to be flexible enough to customize and personalize to your liking.

Whether you have hourly employees or contractors working for you, need assistance managing income and expenses, or need general help when it comes to taxes, your bookkeeping software should have a solution for you.

2.   Ease of Use is Crucial

No small business owner wants to invest company funds into a bookkeeping software that provides more confusion and frustration than it does assistance. In fact, it would defeat the purpose of investing in bookkeeping software to begin with.

Your new software shouldn’t have a steep learning curve for any business owner or accounting team. It should streamline the process and save you loads of time in the process. If you’re receiving anything less than that from your bookkeeping solution, it’s time for new software

3.   Accessibility At All Times

Much like you want the software to be simple, you also want it to be accessible. This means having the ability to view your books and financial insight whenever or wherever you need to -- especially since most small business owners are constantly on-the-go.

It doesn’t matter what device you’ve grown to love over the years, your new bookkeeping software should be supported on it. Phones, tablets, laptops, PCs, you name it!

4.   Excellent Customer Support

Any product, service, or software needs excellent customer support. Nothing is perfect and you’re sure to run into an issue, question, or comment at some point. Since bookkeeping is a stressful process in general, having courteous and helpful customer service agents by your side is a must.

That also means having easy access to these agents, whether it be live chat, phone call, email, by mail, in-person, or through social media. The more options, the better!

5.   Integration At It’s Finest

Over the years, every small business owner has become attached to certain software, apps, tools, and resources when running their business. Having a bookkeeping software that easily integrates with your existing operations is essential to finding one that works for you.

When you have all your technology working together, it makes everything that much easier for you and your team. Since putting yourselves in a position to succeed is crucial to achieving success, you’ll be in a good spot moving forward.

Now that you know what to look for, put that knowledge to good use and find a bookkeeping software that works well with your business. Contact Consultants In-A-Box today to learn more about our solutions and how we can help you take control of your business’ financials.

Money-Saving Accounting Tasks That You Don’t Need to Outsource

Money-Saving Accounting Tasks That You Don’t Need to Outsource

Most small business owners fear the term ‘accounting’ and run from anything considered ‘bookkeeping.’ While outsourcing your accounting needs is beneficial to your company, it also costs money. The key here is limiting the amount of work you need to outsource with the right accounting tips.

How do you do that, exactly?

You take some of the easier responsibilities for yourself and leave the more difficult accounting tasks for the professionals. Don’t worry, the accounting tasks you take on won’t take any special skills and won’t be time-consuming.

They will, however, be money-saving and that’s what’s most important.

Today, we’re going to discuss five of the simplest and easiest-to-manage accounting tasks small business owners should learn to take care of themselves. With the right software and accounting tips, these tasks will be as easy as checking your social media.

1.  Invoicing

Microsoft Excel is an amazing tool that can provide a wide range of benefits to any business -- including managing and recording invoices. Unfortunately, using Excel puts you at risk of constant data entry errors, wrong dates, incorrect amounts, and more.

Of course, this all leads to a delay in receiving payment from the client or customer, which is what no small business owner wants.

Avoiding this requires the right accounting software and accounting tips to help you not only automate your invoicing, but allow you to easily and quickly preview an invoice before being sent. This makes it much for manageable for any busy small business owner.

In addition to that, accounting software can help you change currency for each client, accept deposits up-front for work you just signed a contract for, receive notifications about overdue invoices, allowing the ability to duplicate past invoices for easy editing, and much more.

2.  Accepting & Recording Payments

Getting the invoice to the client is essential, but making sure they have the resources to quickly and easily pay that invoice is just as important. It’ll put a smile on your face when you see clients and customers paying you in a timely manner.

The right accounting software helps you not only keep track of who paid you, but also how they paid, whether the payment was cleared, when it was sent, when it was paid, and just about anything else you’ll need to track when it comes to accepting and recording payments.

The right software also saves you time by giving you an all-in-one solution when depositing checks, handling payments that bounce, and even helping you with foreign currency exchange when dealing with customers overseas.

In terms of accepting payments, you can integrate an easy option built into the invoice. That way the client can pay that invoice the moment they receive it with little work on their end. You can set it up so the money is deposited directly into your business bank account.

In terms of recording everything, a majority of data is recorded automatically to make it easier on the business owner. It’ll keep everything under the same roof so you can easily manage future, current, past, and overdue invoices.

3.  Expenses

When it comes to accounting tasks, managing income isn’t so bad when watching your business grow and receive payments. Unfortunately, things aren’t as fun when managing the money your business is losing -- but they’re just as crucial to the process.

When using a spreadsheet, tracking expenses is difficult and leaves your business prone to mistakes. With the right software and small business accounting tips, you can connect your business bank account directly to the software. That way all your expenses are automatically uploaded to the software every single day.

It’ll make keeping track of expenses a lot easier because you’ll only have to add in the cash expenses, which don’t happen as often in business. Simply snap a picture of the receipt, add in what it was for and how much, and save the entry. You can always label them to further organize, as well.

Accounting software can also help you manage tax deductibles, including meals, business travel, vehicle-related costs, home office expenses, and technology costs.

4.  Sales Tax

Collecting sales tax helps cover tax costs for any small business owner, but most neglect the process of recording and keeping track of the sales tax collected over the past year. This leads to the sales tax being added into your income and used with your spending money.

Of course, a nightmare is bound to happen when you don’t have the funds to cover tax payments. To avoid this from happening, it’s important to manage sales tax collections and keep them separate from everything else you’re receiving.

You’ll always have access to your data and can easily manage how much you’ll owe in sales tax whenever you need to.

5.  Financial Knowledge

When running a business, it’s essential you understand where your business stands financially at all times. You need to know how much cash flow you have, how much money is coming in, how much is leaving, and knowing what the future has in store for you.

Most business owners wait to take care of all these things at month’s end, but that leaves you prone to rushing and making mistakes. Having a software that keeps everything right in front of you throughout the month allows you to stay on top of where your business stands whenever and wherever.

Financial reports should be easy to run and easy to read, they shouldn’t add more frustration to your situation. When choosing a software that’s right for your company, take this into consideration to avoid making the wrong investment.

Once you start to turn these small business accounting tips into habits, you put your business in a much better position moving forward. You’ll have the confidence you need to grow your company and inspire your employees to do better every day.