Many companies spend more than 25% of their compensation budget on benefits such as medical, dental, insurance and retirement plans, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Yet they may be skipping the simple steps that ensure they get the full value from that investment. That’s because employers underestimate just how important benefits are to creating and maintaining employee loyalty.
Only 25% of people who aren’t satisfied with their benefits have a strong sense of loyalty to their job, according to a recent MetLife study. However 70% of employees who like their benefits have a strong sense of loyalty.
According to Prudential, 81% of workers rate a company’s benefits package as highly important to their decision to change employers or remain with their current company. It might be easy to dismiss these statistics – employees should be lucky to even have a job, right? That is the wrong attitude. In January, 63% of Americans were actively looking for a new job or ready to take a better offer if it came along. A Gallup survey shows that 3/4 of Americans are disengaged at work.
Those levels of disengagement are something no company can afford right now. Communication makes the difference. But here’s the good news: Loyal employees aren’t necessarily those with the most expensive benefits. Rather, they’re the ones who understand how to get the most value from their benefits, because they’ve received clear, open communication throughout the year.
And it’s communication – not the programs themselves – that makes the difference between employees who are engaged and those who aren’t.
According to MetLife, When Benefits Communication is Effective:
- 75% of employees are satisfied with their jobs
- 71% of employees are satisfied with their benefits
- 70% are loyal to their employer
When Communication isn’t Effective?
- 27% are satisfied with their job
- 9% are satisfied with their benefits
- 25% are loyal to their employers
Every Company can Have Effective Communication
Effective communication is within your reach, too. All companies will benefit greatly from two steps:
1. Putting your information online
2. Communicating year-round
Start by looking at a benefits website, a single home for all your benefits information on the Internet outside your firewall. This is an absolute must for any company with over 1,000 employees. But even companies with several hundred employees can benefit greatly from a site that pulls together all key information and is accessible by employees as well as family members (that is why being in the Intranet is not enough).
Then make sure you communicate year-round. Don’t just pile on the benefits information during enrollment. Make sure the conversation continues when people are using the plans. Help them understand how to get the most value from the programs you offer. Remind them about visiting the website, and use whatever channels you can to give them simple tips to use throughout the year. Use all the communications channels available in your organization, including in-person meetings, email, and on-site materials like posters. By putting a little extra effort into communicating benefits, you’ll realize immediate results.
The information presented and contained within this article was submitted by Benz Communications, an award-winning employee benefits communications consulting boutique and a contributor for the Client Community newsletter. This information is general information only and does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. You should consult your legal advisors to determine the laws and regulations impacting your business. Any opinions expressed within this document are solely the opinion of the individual author and may not reflect the opinions of Ebix or its personnel.