Top Benefits: What Employees Really Want

Pay raise, or enhanced benefits? Many employees are now choosing the latter when deciding what they want the most from their jobs.

A 2015 study conducted by Glassdoor found that nearly 80% of employees would prefer improved benefits packages from their employers over a pay raise. The report showed that this preference is consistent across both sexes, with 82% of women and 76% of men choosing “work perks” over an increased salary.  Employees belonging to Generation X (ranging from 18 to 34-years old) are even more likely than their older cohorts to prioritize benefits over pay.

When creating your company’s benefit plan, consider the following top benefits:

  1. Health insurance is the leading benefit that individuals evaluate when deciding to accept, leave or search for a new position. Nearly 60% of Americans receive their healthcare coverage through employer-sponsored plans. The process by which companies select the right healthcare plan for their employees can be complicated, as employers establish qualifications for employees to be eligible for coverage. Ongoing discussions surrounding the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and the American Health Care Act (AHCA) have highlighted the important role that employer-sponsored plans play within the United States, increasing the amount of thought that employees give to health insurance when looking at their benefits packages.
  1. Greater flexibility in regards to work hours is another benefit that employees take into consideration. “Flex time” – allowing employees to take off work without having to count or earn time off hours – is a growing trend within the job market, with Millennials leading the push for many workplaces to adopt such policies. The notion that employees need to be at a desk from 9 to 5 each day is evolving.
  1. Vacation days are also a priority for those looking at their job options. Not only do vacation days help improve employee morale and satisfaction within a job, but also improve the economy overall. Studies have found that the economy would benefit from more than $160 billion in total business sales if workers took all of their available paid time off and were encouraged by employers to do so.

With benefits packages now playing a crucial role in recruiting and retaining talent, what can employers do to ensure that their offers beat out the competition?

  • Examine the market – Companies should look at what benefits their competitors are offering, ensuring they are aware of the latest trends and staying ahead of the status quo.
  • Encourage utilization of pre-existing benefits – Employers should encourage their employees to take advantage of the benefits already available to them, creating an environment in which vacation days and sick leave are accessible.
  • Ask employees – Conversations with employees on what they would like to see improved within their benefits packages can help guide employers moving forward, as well as show employees that their opinions are being heard and valued.

Businesses looking to gain a competitive edge should examine their current benefits packages and ensure they align with growing workforce demands. Our team at Creative Benefit Solutions works with clients to create tailored benefits packages that fit both their short-term needs and long-term vision. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you recruit and maintain the top talent at your workplace.