Updating your employee benefits for modern workplace

Perkspotting
Mar 4 · 4 min read

Employee benefit packages are drastically changing as the workplace continues to evolve continually. Employers are now increasingly concerned about the demands of their employees and are trying to ensure that benefit strategies meet them.

In the past decades, employee benefit packages were centered primarily on conventional healthcare and pension offerings. However, the modern workforce is increasingly dominated by Millennials and Gen Z who are demanding a more flexible and broader range of benefits. They also expect that benefits offered to them will be communicated to them as they prefer, wherever and whenever they want. For the business to recruit and retain the most talented employees, they need to adopt benefits strategy that is different from that of the past.

Adopting a benefits strategy for today’s workforce is essential, but it is also equally important to offer highly personalised benefits that are developed for the individual needs of employees. This requires providing benefits when and where employees want, and in their preferred way. They should be able to access these benefits easily. Benefits need to be more lifestyle-oriented based on the personal needs of employees since every individual is different and should be given the ability to choose their benefits. Here are specific strategies they can adapt to update their employee benefits for today’s workforce.

Develop a proactive approach to benefits

Employers most often develop a reactive strategy for employee benefits. They review the plan after every few years especially their products and prices. As a result, they tend to be attracted to large brand-name insurers who offer cost-benefit familiar products. A reactive approach does not take into account the diversity of the workforce and its different needs. It also does not encourage innovation. Employers should instead use a more proactive approach which involves obtaining the responses of workers to find out if they are satisfied with the current plan or if it needs to be changed. One way to do this is by taking polls from workers to gather their responses. Data analytics have a considerable role to play in assessing the level of satisfaction as they can track the usage of employee benefits. This data can help them recognise products that are valued by employees and remove irrelevant and barely used ones.

Go digital

Another important factor that employers should consider while updating employee benefits is the convenience and prevalence of technology in the world. They should try to incorporate this tech into the business to stay relevant to today’s generation. They can easily replace printed documents with a more direct mode of communication. Digital engagement can also be a way to educate workers about their benefits strategy. Employees can be communicated with via mobile phones or email and will be more engaged in this way. This will also be more beneficial for the business and the employers since Millennials are increasingly dominating the workforce. Companies will attract more and more employees if they are embracing this trend readily. Moreover, Companies will be able to understand their employees better and will be more informed about what benefits they need.

Embrace modern benefits

In companies across the globe, products and services that are being offered are becoming more customised and personalised based on the preferences of the workers. Younger employees who are tech savvy are drastically entering the workforce, and they are more concerned with modern benefits that fit their needs. These advanced options include debt consolidation services, health tracking tech, and genome testing, etc. Employers can take the opinion of their employees through polls on benefit preferences, track their technology usage and also assess opportunities to decide the right benefits package. This will also elevate employee happiness who will want to stay in the company for a more extended period as they will be satisfied that their needs are being met.

Provide voluntary benefits

Apart from standard benefits, employers can also offer voluntary benefits to their employees to meet the diverse needs of the workforce. These benefits can range from life insurance to hospital indemnity plans and consumer discounts. Voluntary benefits can also be accounts to assist in reducing childcare costs, such as Dependent Care FSA or consumer-directed healthcare accounts, such as Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA). Employees have the advantage of choosing whichever benefit they want out of the voluntary benefits. They often pay the whole cost of the benefits they have selected. This allows employers to offer useful benefits that pose no risk to the company, as well as meeting employee satisfaction by providing a substantial benefits package.

Motivate employee engagement

Updating employee benefits plan will only matter if employees are actually engaging with the new benefits they are getting. Employees may not be engaging with the benefits for some reasons. Some employees may be comfortable with their existing benefits package and will not want to spend time or money in changing it. Others may feel that their benefits package is too comprehensive for them to understand and thus, do not update it.

Consequently, employers need to motivate employees to engage with new benefits with a few simple steps. First and foremost, they will need to learn what benefits are desired and what improvements are required using the feedback of employees. This can then be incorporated into the benefits strategy for employees. Secondly, they will need to educate employees about the different benefits being offered and how they are of value to them. They should explain to them the importance of updating the benefits strategy. It will be resourceful to conduct a benefits audit with each employee to assess if they have improved. Next, these benefits should be communicated to employees in the way that they desire such as social media or direct contact to ensure that they understand them. Lastly, they should offer benefits interactively and engagingly to make employees happy. This will reduce staff turnover significantly and increase productivity.

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