Not many companies are in tune with the human aspect of doing business. Expedia is one of those rare examples of companies that see their employees as valuable assets, taking proactive steps to offer them a good working environment, with all the benefits. And when it comes to what the company does best – travel – there are options for all: the company promotes employee well-being with a host of health and wellness programs to encourage healthier lifestyle habits. With a revised vacation policy, Expedia also elected to begin offering an annual travel allowance to help fund employees’ vacation travel during their downtime.
Expedia intends to send a clear message to its employees, who apparently tend to work too much and do not take their vacation time:
“It is too common for people to feel like they can’t take time away from work because there’s simply too much to do, or they fear it will reflect poorly on their work ethic,” explained Connie Symes , Executive Vice President of Human Resources at Expedia, Inc.”Our intention was to dispel that notion from the Expedia, Inc. culture and actually incent people to take time to relax and recharge.”
So far, the programme has been well-received by the company’s employees, who also enjoy other benefits, like Expedia’s GO! initiative, which offers workers information, resources and tools to develop and maintain a well-balanced lifestyle focused on factors like physical and mental health.
To complete the benefits for active employees and their families, Expedia partnered with Qliance, to open in January 2013 an onsite clinic within its Bellevue headquarters building. The clinic gives employees easy access to primary health care services, including Saturday hours. In just the first month of operation, employees and their dependents utilized nearly 300 office visits at the clinic.
Expedia’s benefits programmer should serve as a model for other global corporations. A good healthcare programme for employees is important to attract premium talent, and to retain employees. The most successful corporations in the world understand the human nature of business, and use it to enhance brand reputation. Happy employees mean happy customers too.
PR firms for Expedia are Golin-Harris & The Red Consultancy.