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How Remote Work is Disrupting the Employee Benefits Industry

illustration of payment concept for percents currency and information

Working from home, or remote work has spun into the forefront of the next great challenge for companies to navigate and HR teams to manage. Many companies offer hybrid work models now, and in fact 16% of companies exclusively hire remote workers according to a survey by Owl Labs. The benefits industry has largely remained the same for decades, and was always location-dependent. This shift into distributed, global teams is disrupting how employee benefits are administered.

1. Employee benefits: Retirement savings and cryptocurrency

Many companies offer some form of retirement savings options. I use a Group Retirement Savings Plan (Canada), or my American counter-parts have a 401K. When implementing this plan for a growing company recently, I came across a new decision around investing that I had never heard of. I was asked if we wanted to all employees to invest in cryptocurrency or not.


2. Employment of record companies

With the rise of remote work, employers wanted to hire employees around the world, across international borders. But this is complex with varying employment, tax and payroll laws. Then came the rise of remote hiring companies like Oyster, Deel and remote. These companies allow you to hire employees from hundreds of countries around the world, and be compliant. How? I worked with these companies and they have local entities in various countries and actually hire the employee directly – with local tax, payroll and other regulations already set up through their platform. This means that they actually “employ” and administer legally required and competitive benefits too. They are still just like any other employee at your company, but simply for compliance you can hire them through their entity.

work remotely deel hire anywhere remote work company with employee benefits

Deel is a global payroll solution that helps businesses hire anyone, anywhere. Companies can hire independent contractors or full-time employees in over 150 countries, compliantly and in minutes. When I used deel I was particularly delighted with the employment contract templates. It is already there are ready for you with local laws in consideration. Also whenever there is a new law or update they are quick to take action and keep everyone compliant.

Other employee benefits

They don’t just cover payroll and taxes, but they also provide health benefits and other benefits such as paid parental leave. I had an employee in England once who wanted to know about their parental leave benefit, and was delighted to find they offer more than legal minimum standards. This is because they have so many employees within their entity that they have negotiating power. They cover the mandatory requirements, but also break down commonly offered benefits and other benefits that make you a competitive employer:

Listed common and competitive benefit options for your employees

Another tool I love to use is the global salary comparison tool. HR is always looking for the latest salary data – what do we pay a software engineer in Italy? In America? Variations dependent on specific living location and cost of living? This is such a complex topic (more on my thoughts on this in another post), but I really enjoy the free tool that includes so many countries and levels (and well as currencies).

3. Open marketplace access to employee benefits

Indeed this one I am very excited about: a new Canadian benefits disruptor is also on the scene, Cloudadvisors. Whether looking for health, wellness, financial or other spending account. I love that you can search, compare and tailor your benefit plan to your needs specifically. Super useful and opens up transparency into a historically confusing sector. In my experience, employee benefits has been a bit of a black hole with nuances and fine print that were hard enough for HR to understand, let alone employees.

I look forward to continued growth and exploration in disrupting the employee benefits industry to be more transparent, competitive and user accessible.

You may also like: Top 5 remote hiring platforms of 2022

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