Company benefits are a great way of keeping employee’s happy and enticing people to join the team. Not only will it ensure company morale is high, but it is guaranteed to increase the appeal of your business and help minimize the turnover rate. While many companies go above and beyond the requirement to do so, there are benefits you must legally offer all eligible employees. We take a look at which countries are on top when it comes to their employee benefits, as well as those at the bottom of the pile.


What is SSP?

Short for statutory sick pay, SPP is a payment given to employees who are unable to continue working due to illness. This is given when an eligible worker has to have four or more consecutive days off due to sickness. There is typically a set rate that your employer must legally pay you, although some companies may choose to pay more if they have their own sick pay scheme.


SSP for employers: which country is best?

Not all countries have made SSP a legal requirement and so it is up to each individual company to make their own rules. We’ve listed the very best countries based on the pay they’re entitled to each week they’re sick.


  • Switzerland – £802.47
  • Liechtenstein – £757.50
  • Norway – £667.32
  • Australia – £661.85
  • Luxembourg – £617.69


The above countries are generous with their SPP, ensuring employees can afford to take time out to recover. Rushing back to work after an illness can cause your staff to become run down and stressed, potentially resulting in a burnout. Avoid this by ensuring they are comfortable and confident enough to take some time off – it’ll do the business good in the long run.


Paid vacation days/annual leave:

Aside from SSP, paid vacation days is a highly sought after employee benefit. Research has shown that rest periods are important, helping to improve general wellness and reduce stress while boosting productivity.

This list is based on the number of vacation days offered per year:


  • UK and Lithuania – 28
  • Sweden, Luxembourg, Finland, France, Denmark, Austria – 25
  • Iceland – 24
  • Portugal and Spain – 22.
  • Norway – 21.


The following countries have underestimated the power of annual leave, which is vital for preventing burn-out. Businesses are free to offer more holiday – and it is clearly wise to do so – but this is the annual legal requirement:


  • USA – 0
  • Mexico – 6
  • Canada and Japan – 10
  • Israel – 11
  • Turkey – 12

Parental leave:

Parental leave allows new families time to adjust and bond with their new baby. It prepares them for life with a little one, as well as allowing them to organise childcare for the future and recover from childbirth. This includes maternity, paternity and other child-related leave.

The numbers shown below are the total length of both paid maternity and parental leave listed in weeks:


  • Estonia – 166
  • Slovak Republic – 164
  • Finland – 161
  • Hungary – 160
  • Czech Republic – 110
  • Latvia – 94
  • Norway – 91
  • Korea – 64.9


However, not all countries are quite so generous with their parental leave:


  • USA – 0
  • Mexico – 12
  • Israel – 14
  • Switzerland – 14
  • Netherlands and Spain – 16

Most sought after benefits:

Of course, there are plenty of other company benefits that are highly enticing. While SSP, parental leave and annual leave are deemed as some of the most important, companies shouldn’t stop there. According to the Harvard Business Review, the following are amongst the most valued benefits:


  • Improved health, dental and vision insurance
  • Flexible hours and remote working options
  • Student loan or tuition assistance
  • Free gym membership or fitness classes
  • Free coffee, snacks etc
  • Company-wide retreats, end of year parties and team celebrations
  • Weekly employee outings
  • Team bonding events


Many of these benefits are key to boosting morale and keeping employees happy. Getting the balance right is key. Ensuring your company has up to scratch SSP and parental leave policies, an attractive annual leave package and additional benefits contributes towards the productivity, happiness and retention of your workforce.