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Differentiating your benefits offerings: Lifestyle accounts

In today’s workforce, it’s not uncommon for prospective employees to make an employment decision based on an organization’s benefits offerings. With the competitive nature of job offers in the market, employer-based benefits can significantly influence an employee’s choice to take one position over another. Naturally, there is no one-size-fits-all solution to meet the benefits needs of every single employee. As an employer, how do you recognize your workforce and provide value at an individual level?
 
Most employee populations will span over five generations of people—each having their own needs, wants and values when it comes to benefits. Many employers are looking for ways to attract and retain their employees by offering non-conventional offerings, like lifestyle accounts, to meet those specific needs.  

What is a lifestyle account?

Lifestyle accounts are flexible reimbursement offerings that allow employees to tap into employer funds for whatever matters most to them, from education and financial planning to fitness activities and emergency funds. Lifestyle accounts are customized to what employees prioritize and make them feel valued for meeting them at where they are in their life desires.

How does it work?

Employers can choose to fund an account up to a specific dollar amount (i.e., $500 per employee) that employees can use to receive reimbursements for nontraditional, yet highly-valued expenses. Employers can customize the list of eligible expenses on which the funds can be used, from health club reimbursements to student loan repayments and charitable giving—the list is expansive. Since this is considered a fringe account, reimbursements are provided via payroll, so the appropriate taxation can be applied. The account can also be seamlessly integrated into a benefits administration platform and easily accessed via single sign-on, giving employees the power to access their funds whenever they choose.

A recognizable benefit

It’s no secret that employees need to feel appreciated to be inspired to join—or stay at—an organization. Offering valuable benefits that cater to their specific needs empower your people to handle their money how and when they wish, setting you apart from the crowd as an employer. Lifestyle accounts can optimize the overall employee experience by making the benefits experience personal.  
 
Alight offers an array of reimbursement accounts enabling employers to help employees plan for the moments that matter most. Offering the option of a lifestyle account is a huge differentiator for employers looking to stand out in the crowd when it comes to their benefits.
 
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