Retaining Employees and The Evolving Benefits Equation
Benefits are critical to employee satisfaction, but flexibility in using such benefits may be even more important, according to a survey of close to 5,000 U.S. employees. The survey conducted by Willis Towers Watson, a global advisory, brokering and solutions company, discovered 66 percent of those surveyed were willing to pay more each month for improved benefits upon retirement. Almost as many, 61 percent, would volunteer additional funds to create a guaranteed benefit when they retire.
Considering the continued national focus on health care costs, those surveyed did not have the same attitude when it came to health care benefits. When asked if they were willing to pay additional each month for a more expansive health care plan, only 38 percent expressed a willingness for such deductions. 46 percent of those surveyed voiced a desire to pay more to have lower and more stable health care costs. Even fewer, 24 percent, wanted to pay for services to create healthy lifestyles and only 19 percent looked to their benefits to include finance-improvement tools.
Defining Retirement Security
Steve Nyce, senior economist for Willis Towers Watson stated, “While employees continue to feel vulnerable about their long-term financial prospects and say they are willing to pay more for greater retirement security, health care benefits evoke a much different response.” Nyce went on to express that employees state what’s most important to them when it comes to a benefits package.
Building Benefits Satisfaction
- 66 percent say their health care plan meets their needs
- 59 percent believe their retirement plan fits their expectations
- 58 percent would exchange pay for more time off
- 55 percent could accept a better health care plan for an equivalent change in pay
- 48 percent see the benefit in more financial protection benefits
- 43 percent consider their benefits to offer choice and flexibility
- 27 percent say finance initiatives fulfill their needs
The Total Benefit Package
“Employers need to recognize that employee appreciation of their total benefit package has a positive impact on employee engagement,” Julie Stone, a managing director, Health and Benefits, North America, Willis Towers Watson said, “Our research shows just over half of employees whose benefit package meets their needs are highly engaged in their job compared to just 25% of employees reporting a high level of engagement when they believe their benefit package does not meet their needs”.
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