As businesses gradually return to a new normal (ping-related disruption notwithstanding), they are increasingly looking to recognise the contribution their employees have made, with employee benefits a key component of this strategy.
There’s been a recognition that many employees have gone above and beyond to carry on delivering the best work they can in the face of stressful uncertainty, disruption to family life and schooling, and being cut off from their wider teams while working from home.
At the same time, employers are feeling more confident to invest in taking on new staff. They’re having to work harder to attract the best talent and we’re hearing stories of companies competing with several competitors to try and employ the same people. Again, a comprehensive benefit and employee wellbeing programme can make the difference to potential new hires.
Introducing new benefits will always be welcomed by employees, but this is often not possible due to cost constraints. It’s crucial then to ensure that maximum value is achieved from existing benefits. While existing premiums can usually be negotiated lower, the real impact comes from communication and engagement with employees.
If employees don’t fully understand what benefits are provided, and crucially how to make use of them, they can’t value them. It’s not enough to offer something and just include a note in their employee welcome pack or hide a link on the intranet; employers need to find ways to bring the benefits to life on an on-going basis, with things like events, real life testimonials, and team champions. The key is taking what employees really value from each benefit and putting this at the heart of the communication strategy. Digital platforms play an increasingly important role here too, providing a centralised hub and communications tool.
Grant Thornton Employee Benefit team’s consultancy model is designed to help clients achieve the maximum value from their benefits. We help businesses create a better and more supportive workplace, and in turn help their employees live better lives, by reframing benefits around what matters for employees. Benefits are evolving rapidly and we aim to put employers at the forefront of the latest solutions in order to meet the raised expectations their people have. We’re excited to work with forward-thinking employers, who can find out more at www.grantthornton.co.uk/services/consulting/people-advisory/employee-benefits/, or by emailing us email@example.com.
Guest post written by Laurie Eggleston