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Employee Benefits News

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18 Jan 2018

Employees (and potential employees) want better communication about benefits

Clearer information about the employee benefits available can help firms attract staff, according to research from Canada Life Group Insurance.

A survey found that 85% of employees are more likely to work for employers who offer clearly labelled workplace benefits, suggesting that workers value benefits when choosing a new job but often struggle to understand what they are being offered.

Younger employees in particular want to know more about the benefits on offer, with 94% of those aged 25-34 agreeing that better labelling would help their decision.

Asked about their current workplace, less than two in five (37%) respondents said that their employer is very transparent and helpful when it comes to workplace benefits. In fact, one in five (19%) only received benefits information when they first joined the company and have had no other communication regarding benefits since then.

A third (31%) said they wish their employer would provide more information about benefits but more than one in ten (13%) admitted that they would have no idea who to approach for further information.

So who is responsible for making sure employee benefits are clearly understood by staff?

In the survey, a third (32%) of employees said it was their employer and another fifth (20%) put the responsibility on both employers and product providers/insurers. A similar proportion said they are responsible as an individual (19%), rising to a third (33%) of respondents aged 25-34, the highest of all age groups. This sense of responsibility implies a higher level of engagement with non-salary benefits from younger workers, Canada Life Group Insurance pointed out.

Paul Avis, the company´s marketing director, said: “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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