Employee Engagement

Research from Canada Life Group Insurance reveals 85% of employees are more likely to work for employers who offer clearly labelled workplace benefits, suggesting workers value benefits when choosing a new job position but often struggle to understand what they are being offered.  The results show that clearer employee benefit information is needed for companies to win the battle to recruit and retain staff.

This trend is particularly pronounced among employees aged 25-34, with 94% agreeing that better labelling would help their decision. Given the ever-increasing competition to attract the best new talent, employers should be clear what benefits are available in their company and the value they bring to staff.

The survey also found that employer communication regarding benefits is often sporadic, with less than two in five (37%) respondents stating that their employer is very transparent and helpful when it comes to workplace benefits. A third (31%) wish their employer would provide more information, with one in five (19%) only receiving benefits information when they first joined and never again after that. More than one in ten (13%) would have no idea who to ask for further information.

Employers most responsible for ensuring benefits are understood

When it comes to defining who is responsible for ensuring employee benefits are clearly understood by staff, a third (32%) of respondents believe this falls to their employer. However, a fifth (20%) would pin responsibility on both employers and product providers/insurers. A similar proportion say they are responsible as an individual (19%), rising to a third (33%) of respondents aged 25-34, the highest of any other age group. This sense of responsibility implies a higher level of engagement with non-salary benefits from younger workers.

Table 1: Who employees believe is responsible for ensuring group risk products are clearly understood

My employer is responsible 32%
Employers and product providers/insurers are both responsible 20%
I am responsible as an employee 19%
The product provider/insurer is responsible 17%
All parties are responsible 12%

Paul Avis, Marketing Director at Canada Life Group Insurance, comments:

“Our research has shown that employees do consider what benefits are available to them when deciding which employer to work for, and rightly so, but is enough being done to communicate their value? For example, our support services alone provide £180 value per employee every year to those insured for Group Income Protection, and £205 for employees covered under a Group Critical Illness policy with us. In a period of low wage inflation so much more can be done to clearly communicate the value of what an organisation has already paid for.

“It is very encouraging to see younger employees in particular are taking such an interest in workplace benefits. However, there does seem to be a worrying lack of clarity about what is available and who employees should direct their enquiries to. Proactive, ongoing messaging with clear internal ownership is needed.

“Employers tend to provide these communications around induction but, to get the best from their company’s benefit spend, this needs to be maintained and provided to all staff rather than just new joiners. Insurers and advisers have a role to play in providing information and materials to help give employers the tools to drive positive conversations around their benefit packages. With a raft of superb communications in many different formats available to them, employers should actively engage with all their benefits providers to see what they can provide.”

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