Posted October 30, 2017
Private sector businesses spend 31 percent of employee compensation budgets on benefits. However, many employees don’t appreciate or understand the value of the benefits plans provided. They believe compensation and benefits cost much less than the actual investment.
Interestingly, many employees look at the quality of benefits when considering whether to stay with their current employer or take a new position.
Here are three suggestions for communicating the value of employee benefits programs:
1. Explain the full value of compensation and benefits – Improve communications by:
- Creating a chart or infographic to help employees visualize and appreciate the full value of their compensation and benefits.
- Identifying the specific amount you will contribute for benefits and the out-of-pocket costs employees can expect to pay during the year.
- Providing a benefits calculator to help employees see the full value of their compensation and benefits package.
Remember, employers who communicate benefits effectively retain good employees, increase productivity and keep employees engaged.
2. Communicate with all employees regardless of age – According to the Society for Human Resource Management, employers sometimes think benefits are valued more by older employees than younger workers. However, research indicates that benefits are important to both audiences. The value employees place on their benefits may change with age and experience, so employers should adjust their communications to these different age groups and audiences.
3. Simplify benefits explanation and use examples – Employees usually spend 30 minutes or less reviewing and enrolling in benefits plans. They often don’t understand the terminology used to describe coverage choices and the plans all look the same. Instead, they rely on advice from family, friends and co-workers. Help employees be proactive consumers by:
- Communicating benefits information in simple terms with many examples.
- Providing tips on how employees can determine their benefits needs by evaluating the health of their family members.
- Sharing benefits information in many formats to reach employees, including social media, newsletters, emails and meetings.
- Inviting your broker and insurance representative to meet with employees, explain benefits and answer questions.
- Reminding employees to use their benefits and update their plans when family needs change.