Essentials for an Effective Total Rewards Program

Total Rewards Program

Essentials for an Effective Total Rewards Program

Striking a balance with your total rewards program is essential for attracting and retaining top talent. According to Entrepreneur, employers that offer the elements of total rewards that employees value most have more satisfied employees who are less likely to quiet and are more committed to meeting goals.

Of course, there’s a lot that must be encompassed in a total rewards program, and it’s difficult for even the most successful compensation managers to keep up with all of the components. Here, we provide a quick guide for all of the things that you may want to include in your total rewards program for employees:

  • Base Pay
    Essentially, this refers to the employee’s salary. It should include this figure, as well as the total of other income, such as holiday and annual or performance bonuses.
  • Insurance Benefits
    Here, you can break out the different types of insurance your company offers, including health, dental, and life insurance. Be sure to list the company contribution amount for each, and don’t forget both long and short term disability.
  • Time Off
    Your organization probably already has existing PTO plans, but here’s something to keep in mind: Employees of less than one year receive an average of seven sick days, while all others typically receive nine. New workers typically receive 15 days PTO per year, while ten-year veterans typically receive 24 and employees of 20 years or more receive 29 ( Of course, it’s important to implement a structure that’s equitable and effective for your company. Keep in mind that if the amount of PTO you offer may vary according to the life/work flexibility your company offers.
  • Mandated Benefits
    This is one area where you don’t have to go above and beyond requirements. In the U.S., mandated benefits include unemployment, workers compensation, disability, social security, regular leave, and family and medical leave (source: S. Small Business Administration).
  • Retirement Benefits
    You can also choose to break down company/employee contributions to social security here (instead of under mandated benefits). Some other things to incorporate are Medicare and 401(K) contributions.
  • Special Benefits
    Here’s where you can get creative. If you offer education or training opportunities, go ahead and incorporate these into employee benefits statements here. You can also include transportation, phone bills, and any other “extras” that you offer.

Once you’ve composed an effective total rewards program for employees, the next step is communicating them so that your employees understand all of the ways in which you’re rewarding them for their hard work.


HRsoft is a leading provider of strategic talent management software that improves manager effectiveness and business results. Our full suite of cloud-based HR software solutions includes applicant tracking software, compensation planning software, total rewards software, stay interview software, performance management software, and content management software. For more information on our Total Rewards Software, REWARDview, click the button below!

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