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Four Keys to Understanding the Value of Corporate Discounts

In today’s highly competitive labour market where employee turnover is widespread, companies are faced with the seemingly impossible challenge of retaining talent. In this context, creating an organisational culture that fosters loyalty has become crucial, yet difficult to achieve. One effective solution to this problem has emerged as corporate discounts. These have proven not only to increase employee satisfaction, which in turn helps retain existing talent, but also to be a powerful tool for attracting new talent. This means that the benefits are not limited to employees, but also have an impact on the companies that offer them. These benefits strengthen the company’s image as an attractive employer committed to the well-being of its team.

What are corporate discounts?

Corporate discounts are special pricing agreements negotiated either within the employing company or between the employing company and an external supplier or service provider. They are offered exclusively to employees of the participating company and are intended to encourage loyalty, promote partnerships and ultimately, increase sales.

How did corporate discounts first come about? 

Although it may seem like a modern-day concept, corporate discounts as we know them actually first emerged during the Industrial Revolution and were initially provided by industrialists in order to maintain a stable workforce. As explained in an article published by the Insurance Company, YuLife, they evolved over time and, driven by social progress and the workers’ movement, they became structured benefits. A turning point came in the late 19th century when the German Chancellor Otto von Bismarck introduced a formal health insurance system for workers, thereby influencing global recognition of employees’ needs.

Legislative landmarks such as the United Kingdom’s National Insurance Act of 1911 and the United States Social Security Act of 1935 further shaped employee benefits by requiring contributions to state-run insurance schemes. After World War II, benefits expanded significantly in the Western world, driven by a competitive labour market and recognition of the value of a satisfied workforce. 

What are now seen as today’s basic benefits (days off, holidays, health insurance, etc.), gradually evolved into discounts on purchases of goods and services.

What are the different types of corporate discounts?

Corporate discounts come in a variety of formats, tailored to meet different business needs. Common types include:

  • Quantity Discounts: These discounts are based on the amount of goods or services purchased. The more you buy, the greater the discount received.
  • Member Discounts: Many suppliers offer discounts to certain organisations or to members of certain associations. Your company can access exclusive discounts on various products and services by joining relevant industry groups.
  • Employee Discounts: These discounts are offered to employees as part of their benefits package. They can include discounts on retail purchases, gym memberships and mobile phone plans.
  • Associate Discounts: Establishing strategic partnerships with other companies can unlock significant discounts for both parties. Companies can get better deals with suppliers and service providers by pooling resources and negotiating collectively.

Interesting facts about Corporate Discount programmes 

As already established, creating a discount programme can (and almost always does) have a positive impact on employee retention. But beyond this factor, there are also other additional benefits associated with having such a scheme in place. Irrespective of what we believe the qualitative benefits may be, such as improving the working environment, culture or motivation, objective data exists supporting the great advantages of corporate discounts and the obvious need for them.

  • 78% of employees report that the Employee Benefits package is very or extremely important in their decision to accept or reject a job (Employee Benefit Research Institute).
  • 85% of employees felt that their benefits package did not provide the support and flexibility needed to meet current financial obligations (Barklay’s).
  • 94% of millennials and 92% of Generation X claim that non-traditional benefits make employers more attractive (iCIMS).
  • 73% of employees said that personalised benefits increase their loyalty (MetLife).

Pioneers in Corporate Discounts

Discount programmes aren’t just mere reductions in purchase prices. In reality, they represent a set of strategic benefits that positively impact both the employees and the company. In addition to the statistics mentioned above, adding a few examples of large, globally recognised companies that are leaders in this type of company policy, should be enough to convince you.

  • Apple: Employees enjoy a 25% discount on their entire product range, including iPhones, iPads, Macs and more. This translates into privileged access to the latest technological innovations and, in the process, fosters loyalty, pride and satisfaction among staff.
  • Nike: In the world of sport, this company motivates its employees with exclusive discounts on clothing, footwear and sports accessories. Beyond economic benefits, this also encourages an active and healthy lifestyle among its employees, reinforcing its brand identity and creating a dynamic work environment.
  • Google: The leading search engine provider offers a complete package that includes discounts on Google products such as Pixel phones, Nest devices and YouTube Premium. This strategy goes beyond providing employees with material benefits and seeks to improve the personal and professional experience of its employees through technology.
  • Microsoft: Employees of the software company, can purchase products such as Surface laptops, Xbox consoles and Office 365 licences at a discounted price. The company thereby facilitates access to tools that optimise work and leisure, boosting employee satisfaction and engagement.
  • Amazon: E-commerce employees have access to discounts on a wide range of products, including electronics, books, clothing and household items. This variety allows employees to save on everyday purchases, improving their quality of life and overall well-being.

Which Corporate Discount programme does your company need?

When deciding which discount programme suits your company best, an important factor to take into consideration is whether the discounts apply to services or products offered by the company itself. This can offer direct benefits for frequent or necessary purchases at your workplace, such as discounts on food, health services or specific products. Moreover, these discounts can strengthen the employee-company relationship by adding value to the employment relationship.

Some programmes also offer discounts with partner companies. These can be more beneficial because they expand the discount options beyond what is offered by the company itself, providing a wider variety of choices. Vip District is a case in point, offering a personalised and exclusive discount club, as well as a network of leading brands such as Carrefour, Dyson, Lenovo and Avis. This diversity of brand partners enhances the value of the discount programme for employees, allowing them to access a wider range of discounted products and services.

Corporate discounts are an essential tool for talent retention and attraction and for strengthening the company’s image as a committed employer. Choosing the right discount programme could significantly improve the working environment and the overall perception of your company.