Employee benefits play a critical role in helping employers recruit and retain talent. However, researching and implementing the right combination of benefits plans can be time-consuming and complicated for non-experts. Working with an experienced employee benefits consulting firm can help businesses navigate different plan options and choose policies and programs that are financially sustainable and competitive.
A 2022 Global Benefits Attitude Survey revealed that employees see benefits as one of the top three reasons why they choose a particular company and remain at their job. With the start of the new year in sight, employers can begin preparing now to build a more comprehensive employee benefits package that will make them stand out against the competition.
Start the New Year by Investing in Your Most Valuable Asset: Your Employees
While compensation remains the single most important factor when deciding to stay with a current company or look for a new one, there are other employee benefits and job perks that can play a key role in an employee’s decision. Today, there are several important things that employees look for when it comes to job benefits.
Support for mental wellness has become a top priority for many businesses, especially since the pandemic. In a survey conducted in 2021 by Calm for Business, 97 percent of respondents said that they would like to see employers working to improve the mental health of their employees.
Modern employees are often on the lookout for jobs that offer nontraditional benefits, such as more time off, caregiver support, opportunities for social connections, a more modern workplace, ways to stay physically active, and greater flexibility in working hours and location.
When choosing nontraditional benefit options, it is important to consider the cost-effectiveness of these plans to determine if they fit in the company budget. By starting off the new year with benefits that employees actually want and will use, employers can show their appreciation to their most valuable asset, their employees.
Emphasize the Protection and Security That Your Benefits Package Provides
There is a greater demand for security among employees due to ongoing uncertainties in the world. Employees want to know that they have access to the benefits they need to maintain good health and wellness, especially medical coverage. The 2022 Global Benefits Attitude Survey revealed that 46 percent of employees are willing to sacrifice a larger percentage of their paycheck for more generous healthcare benefits.
In addition to greater healthcare coverage, many employees are seeking emotional support, such as resources that provide financial protection. Many employers are also taking a holistic approach to employee benefits as part of their initiative to enhance their organization’s overall wellness strategy. Research published by WTW showed that 85 percent of employers are focused on enhancing employee financial, physical, emotional, and social well-being.
Provide Choices and Opportunities for Employees to Select What’s Best for Them
Communication is key when selecting employee benefits. Employers often fail to communicate with their employees regarding what benefits are most sought after and can provide the greatest amount of assistance.
When employees are not given any say in their benefits, they are more likely to see these benefits as costly rather than a good value. However, many employers are recognizing this issue and making changes. According to WTW research, 49 percent of employers have added more choices to their benefits and an additional 23 percent are planning to or are considering this in 2023.
Today, many employers have developed creative solutions designed to meet employee demand while remaining cost-effective. Some of these solutions include options like lifestyle spending accounts in which employees receive a lump sum in which they can choose how they would like to allocate their benefits dollars.
Create a Seamless Experience for Employees to Prepare for, Enroll, and Use Benefits
Lengthy or complex benefits enrollment can sometimes discourage employees from participating in plans that could benefit their health and future. It is the responsibility of employers to help employees prepare for, enroll, and use their benefits to their maximum advantage.
According to WTW research, approximately 52 percent of employers have taken the necessary actions to enhance the employee enrollment experience, while 34 percent are planning to do so in the near future.
There are many considerations that employers must make when creating a seamless experience for employees to enroll and use their benefits, such as accessibility. Employers must find ways to support employees who may be colorblind, neurodiverse, or suffer from decision-making anxiety. An experienced employee benefits consulting firm can help work with employees who may need more information or assistance when preparing for, enrolling, or using their benefits.
Support Employees in Decision-Making During Benefits Enrollment
Many employees face challenges when selecting the best benefits for themselves and their families. One way that employers can make this process easier on them is through a multifaceted approach known as decision support. Decision support is a system for assisting employees going through the complex open enrollment period that usually occurs once a year.
There are several components of decision support, starting with employee educational materials. In most cases, employee educational materials are documents that are integrated into a benefits administration platform. These documents can help educate employees about insurance and benefit options. Today, these resources are often available in an online digital form.
Decision support also includes employee-initiated actions. Employee-initiated actions refer to the various actions that employees may take that may require an affirmative act in the employee benefits administration platform to support the decision-making process. Other decision support tools include benefits administrative platform-initiated actions which require employees to answer questions during the Open Enrollment period to gain a better understanding of their benefits needs.
Employees Who Prioritize Their Preventative Health Care Get More Accomplished
Preventative care is an important topic for employees in all industries. Research from the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that 4.2 million employees missed work in the month of January 2018 alone due to an injury, illness, medical issue, or appointment. Time away from work can result in lost productivity; however, continuing to work while dealing with a health concern can also decrease productivity and overall employee engagement.
Prioritizing health and wellness can help employees remain well and get more accomplished in the workplace. This can be achieved with the right health and wellness programs and plans. Through preventative care, a wide variety of diseases in which no outward symptoms are often present can get diagnosed and treated early on, such as certain cancers, diabetes, obesity and depression, among others.
Remain Competitive, Attract the Best Talent, and Ensure Organizational Success
Employers often struggle with handling employee benefits on their own in an ever-changing business landscape. Working alongside an experienced and reputable employee benefits consulting firm like New City Insurance can ensure that employee demands are met while remaining within budget.
With help from an employee benefits consulting firm, businesses can remain competitive in their industries, attract top talent to the company, and increase their odds of maintaining organizational success for the long term. They can also help resolve common challenges and offer cost-control strategies to help mitigate rising healthcare increases.