Choosing your employees’ employee benefits package

benefits packageNearly half of UK workers (48%) don’t think their current employee benefits package is tailored to their needs, according to a new study.

The study published by SalaryFinance, surveyed 1,000 UK workers also found that:

  • Less than 4 in 10 workers (38%) have access to flexible working.
  • A quarter (26%) of respondents would prefer flexible working to financial and psychological wellbeing benefits.
  • Less than a fifth (19%) of those surveyed have access to benefits designed to support their mental wellbeing, such as counselling services.
  • Only a quarter (26%) of respondents receive financial wellbeing support from their employer.
  • Nearly a third 32% of employees surveyed receive ad hoc incentives such as free lunches, birthday cakes and duvet days.

The study also found just over half (58%) the employees surveyed have never been asked for feedback on their benefits package by their employer. This figure highlights the fact that employers and HR professionals could be out of touch with the needs of their employees.

If your employees are happy, then your customers will be happy, and employee benefits play a major part in ensuring employees are happy to work for you. A good employee benefits package is also an excellent way to recruit top talent, improve productivity and retain the talent you already have.

For employees, the right employee benefits give them peace of mind, for example, life insurance or employee discount schemes, and help them treat themselves to extra holidays or days out.

 

How do you choose which benefits to offer?

Employee benefits planningIf you want to determine which types of employee benefits might be best for different generations of employees, a good first step is to carry out an audit to establish the demographics of the organisation and work out who will be responsive to what is on offer from an organisational perspective.

Once you have an idea of what benefits will be attractive to the different demographics of your workforce you can then involve your employees in helping you decide the final selection. This can be done by:

  • Having employee representatives on the benefits committee
  • Holding focus groups with different segments of your workforce
  • Ask managers for feedback from their employees in team meetings
  • Set up a paper-based or online questionnaire

You should also take into consideration your company values to help you decide what employee benefits you should offer. While your employee benefits need to satisfy your employees’ needs, they should also align with your company values. For example, if one of your values is based on caring and community then one employee benefit could be paid time off for local charitable work.

 

Communicating with your employees

But perhaps part of the problem lies in organisations not properly communicating their employee benefits scheme correctly. It’s important that you let your employees know about it.

The cost of keeping quiet about your benefits scheme

Cass Business School estimates that failing to tell employees about benefits schemes costs UK companies £2.7 billion a year through increased staff turnover and sickness absence.

Here are some tips for communicating your employee benefits scheme:

  • Launch your employee benefits scheme enrolment period with a big splash. As well as promoting it perhaps hold an employee benefits fair where employees can find out more about the benefits on offer and talk to advisors.
  • Keep the communication and promotion going, regularly remind your employees reminding of the benefits on offer.
  • Encourage managers to include conversations about employee benefits into their employees’ annual reviews.
  • Measure the participation rates for each employee benefit you offer so you know how successful it is or whether it needs changing.

 

Download our Employee benefits communication plan

Employee benefits communication plan

Know you need to improve the way you communicate your suite of employee benefits but haven’t a clue where to start?


Click here to download

John Sylvester

John is responsible for the motivation division of p&mm ltd and a Director on the board of the IPM. Specialising in developing, implementing and directing many large scale staff motivation, recognition and employee communications programmes.
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