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Commuter Benefits Complement Other Initiatives

Commuter Benefits complement many initiatives your company may already be interested in:

Work-Life Balance

Sustainability, Global Warming, and the Environment
High Gas Prices
Corporate Citizenship
Comprehensive and Competitive Benefits Package 
Employee Health and Wellness

 

Work-Life Balance

Implementing a Commuter Benefits program is one more way you can be responsive to the personal needs of your employees. Benefits of work-life balance have been well-documented. A recent study by the Society for Human Resources Management reports that employees who look favorably on their organization's efforts to support work/life balance expressed a much lower intent to leave the organization. Back to top

Sustainability, Global Warming, and the Environment

These days, everyone wants to know:

        What is your company doing to address climate change?

        How are you addressing sustainability?

        Are you part of the environmental problem or solution?

In the last decade, and the last couple of years in particular, we have witnessed a sea change in public concern about global warming.  Celebrities, newspaper editors, and politicians across the spectrum have voiced concern.  Polls find that the majority of Americans are concerned or very concerned about global warming.

At the same time, “sustainability” has become a major buzzword.  People are concerned about our ability to maintain our quality of life without leaving a mess for our children and grandchildren.

Companies are under increasing pressure to behave in environmentally friendly, sustainable ways and to be part of the solution to the global problems we face.  Transportation is the largest contributor to smog-forming air pollution in Santa Barbara County, and the second-largest contributor to global warming in California (second only to power production).  

An effective Commuter Benefits program can send a powerful message about what your company is doing to lessen its impact on the environment.  Instead of just complying with regulations, it is a proactive step that reduces our ecological footprint and makes our community healthier. Back to top

High Gas Prices

With gas prices on the rise for the last couple of years, many commuters are feeling the pinch.  Instead of remaining silent and letting employees make difficult transportation and life choices alone, offering a Commuter Benefits program provides them options to avoid the drain of high gas prices on their family’s budget. 

Wouldn’t it be great to offer a transit pass, an opportunity to vanpool, a carpool match list, or the ability to telework to employees faced with long commutes?

Advertisements for our Clean Air Express commuter service from north county to south county asks, “What would you do with the money you save?”  By taking a commute coach service instead of driving, an employee might be able to save thousands of dollars a year.  You may be able to hold on to good employees by offering them an alternative to driving alone, and give them an “indirect pay raise” in the process! Back to top

Corporate Citizenship

If everyone does their part, our communities can be models of sustainability and livability.  We all want to preserve the quality of life in our Santa Barbara County communities. But no one company or agency can do it alone.  It takes civic leadership and broad partnerships to create win-win situations for our communities.

Participating in Commuter Benefits and encouraging commute options for employees can help reduce traffic congestion and pollution.  Beyond the benefits for your employees and your company, these social benefits have a huge impact on the places we live and work. 

Encouraging Commuter Benefits makes your company part of the solution. Back to top

Comprehensive and Competitive Benefits Package

Due to the high cost of living, recruitment and retention are among the top challenges human resources professionals face in Santa Barbara County.  Companies are constantly competing to lure the best and brightest, and offer the most compelling benefits packages.  The high cost of living also means that some employees are pushed further and further from their jobs...and must commute!

The price of Commuter Benefits programs is small compared with other benefits, but the impact on employees lives can be huge.  Consider the stress and cost of driving alone from Santa Maria to Santa Barbara versus the comfort and cost savings of an employer-sponsored vanpool.  It's not a big cost to your company, but it's a huge benefit for your employee -- they gain two hours a day of productive time and save thousands of dollars a year.  Likewise, the ability to telecommute one day a week or have a flexible or alternative schedule can make a huge difference in employee's lives, while having a neutral or perhaps even positive effect on your bottom line.

Employees are more attracted and loyal to companies that are responsive to their personal needs.  If you are serious about recruiting top talent, why not develop a comprehensive plan that includes this valuable set of benefits? Back to top

Employee Health and Wellness

Did you know? In 2002, the National Academies' Institute of Medicine doubled the previous Surgeon General's recommendations for daily exercise to "one hour every day of moderately intense physical activity".   Stress and sedentary lifestyles take a terrible toll on our health.   One in three Americans are considered overweight, and another one in three are considered obese. 

With today's busy schedules, you can help your employees maintain a healthy lifestyle by encouraging active commute modes like walking, biking, even walk/bus or bike/bus.  You can  help by providing bicycles at the workplace for lunch trips and quick errands, and convenient parking, showers, and lockers for active commuters. 

Active transportation to work also improves one's mood and reduces stress.  In a study Traffic Solutions conducted of our Team Bike Challenge participants, over 70% listed "Improving my mood" as an important or very important motivator to ride for transportation.  Over 88% listed "Fitness" as important or very important.   Encouraging active commutes for local employees fits in very well with an overall Employee Health and Wellness initiative. Back to top

Traffic Solutions is a division of the Santa Barbara County Association of Governments

©2007 SBCAG Traffic Solutions