Employers have long been aware that a good combination of employee benefits has the power to attract, engage and retain talent. The question for many of us today is how to tap into that power and evolve an existing benefits offering to meet the changing demands of an increasingly diverse and multi-generational workforce.
What we’ve found often happens is an organisation might budget for a project that allows them to launch a new employee benefit, but doesn't factor in the cost of the ongoing roll-out or communication of the initiative. This impacts the awareness, adoption and ROI of that benefit.
A recent article by "Employee Benefits" showed that three quarters of employees want a more tailored benefits package.
So how do you move forward and make sure that you're giving your people the best benefits you can? Here are a few things we can learn from the best employers who are innovating their employee benefits in order to stand out from their competitors and meet the needs of their workforce:
1. Start with your people
Taking the time to ask, listen to and measure what your workforce really values will help ensure your investment and efforts aren’t wasted. Using surveys and platform analytics to get feedback from different areas of the business is key. While external benchmarking is important when it comes to designing benefits offerings, ensuring they are truly relevant will improve take-up and longevity of a benefits programme.
2. Take a holistic and long-term approach
Look for ways to support different areas of your employees lives. It could be by leveraging their buying power and amplifying their disposable income by offering an everyday employee discounts programme, encouraging free peer-to-peer recognition or setting up an internal mentoring programme. Expanding your offering doesn’t necessarily mean increasing investment, but shifting or being creative with your current budget.
Developing a holistic benefits package helps companies build a strong employer brand that their people can connect with and trust, fuelling your attraction and retention strategies to nurture a positive culture that employees are proud of.
3. Stop making employee wellbeing a tick-box benefit
Leading organisations are taking an increasing interest in improving employee wellbeing in tangible ways with a more holistic approach to building a benefits portfolio.
Employers now need to find creative ways to support employee wellbeing, including financial, physical, mental and emotional wellbeing, using proactive and reactive tools to help.
It's important to consider how to offer support when needed, but also how employers can help their people make changes to their lifestyle so those more drastic, reactive measures may not even be necessary.
One of the biggest enemies of an employee benefits programme is poor communication – and this is especially true when it comes to your wellbeing tools and initiatives. For better uptake and engagement, employee wellbeing must be packaged up and communicated effectively to the business.
A look at our own Wellbeing Centre on boom!
4. Digital is key to successful benefits design and delivery
Companies who are ahead of the curve invest in tools that offer a consumer-grade experience that their employees have come to see as “normal” in their personal lives. According to a recent study, Europeans spend over two and a half hours a day on their mobile devices.
Choice, mobility, immediacy, and 24/7 support is pretty standard for our everyday experience.
Employers who can offer benefits that are personalised and convenient now set their employee experience and employer brand above the rest. They reduce time and cost of administration, open up a whole host of communication channels and access to program data and analytics that help increase awareness and usage, as well as refine their overall offering.
Want support as you evolve your benefits offering?