Ping-Pong is Out: Healthcare is In

Companies don’t need quirky benefits to draw in job candidates — they need benefits that improve employee lives.

Written by Avery Komlofske
Published on Oct. 26, 2022
Ping-Pong is Out: Healthcare is In
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Companies can easily make the mistake of trying to come up with the most creative or unique benefits to draw in prospective job candidates. However, research indicates that this is the wrong approach.

Instead, they should brush up on the fundamentals: flexibility, health and wellness, and family care.

Built In’s 2022 Candidate Insight Report asked 1,000 tech professionals of a variety of age groups and backgrounds what benefits they valued most from an employer. The top spot, by a wide margin, was health insurance. Other high-value benefits included remote work opportunities, mental health and wellness benefits, retirement contributions and generous PTO.

There’s nothing particularly fancy about those benefits, but they’re essential. Taking care of one’s mental and physical health, allowing for more time to pursue passions, nurturing extra bandwidth for family and friends, and securing one’s future all assist employees in living a fulfilling life beyond the job — something that is increasingly important to the new generation of workers.

This month, Built In Seattle is featuring three companies — Optimize Health, DoubleDown Interactive and Variant Bio — who prioritize those fundamentals. The featured benefits may not come with the whack of a paddle or the flush of cold brew, but they contribute far more to employee satisfaction than any snack bar or happy hour.


A doctor on a laptop screen observing a patient taking their blood pressure at home.
Source: Shutterstock



What they do: Optimize Health provides software for remote patient monitoring (RPM) systems. They offer a full range of services — insurance verification, monitoring and reimbursement support — and clients can opt in to receive assistance on any number of them, or simply benefit from the software.


Remote support: The company provides a robust work-from-home option for employees. Not only does every full-time position have the opportunity to work remotely, those who do can benefit from Optimize Health’s $750 home office stipend to do their job in an optimal environment. 


Wellness programs: Employees at Optimize Health have access to benefits to improve their physical and mental wellness. On the mental side, Optimize Health makes use of TalkSpace, an app that connects users to licensed therapists with flexible communication plans. For physical health, team members can find classes and programs through a subscription to ClassPass and get discounts at gyms around the area.



The front of DoubleDown Interactive's Office
Source: DoubleDown Interactive



What they do: DoubleDown Interactive is known for bringing casino-style gaming to the masses via desktop and mobile. Last year, they started exploring beyond social casino to create multiple, all-new casual and mid-core franchises. They currently have four mobile gaming apps: DoubleDown Casino, DoubleDown Fort Knox, DoubleDown Classic Slots and Undead World: Hero Survival.


Family first: With everything going on in the world, DoubleDown has employees backs. Between four Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) offered, DoubleDown wants to ensure a variety of experts are available to provide guidance on everyday issues for not only employees but any individuals living in their household. This is just one of DoubleDown’s family-friendly policies — they also host an annual summer picnic and encourages families to attend. Recently, a costume contest was held which included three categories: Best Employee Costume, Best Children’s Costume and Best Pet Costume!


Giving back: The company has partnered with several nonprofits to give back to the community, both through donations and volunteer days. Some of these partnerships include Extra Life, Seattle Pride, PFLAG Seattle, ASPCA, Americares and the National Breast Cancer Foundation.



A person talking to another person in two separate chairs. We are seeing from the perspective of one of those people who has a tattoo on their hand.
Source: Variant Bio



What they do: Variant Bio performs ethically-minded genetic research. The company focuses its research on genetic outliers, building new information databases around genetic conditions and using that research to develop therapeutic drugs. Notably, it forms benefit-sharing relationships with its study participants — they are partners in research, rather than simply subjects.


Comprehensive health: The company pays for 100 percent of employee monthly health insurance premiums. Their health plan includes medical, dental and vision care, along with disability and life insurance.


Diversity and equity: The mean gender pay gap — the average difference in pay between men and women — at Variant Bio is under 10 percent. For context, the average pay gap in Seattle sits at 26.6 percent as of 2020, according to Business Insider.


Responses have been edited for length and clarity. Images via listed companies and Shutterstock.

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