Everybody’s always saying how important it is to communicate regularly with employees, especially in the benefits area. So how come so few companies do it effectively?
Given the combined pressures of health care reform, an unsettled economy, and an unhealthy and financially unstable workforce, HR pros are scrambling to keep people informed about ways to maintain health and happiness.
But, according to the 2012 Inside Benefits Communication survey from Benz Communications, organizations are doing more talking about communication than actually communicating.
Check out these results from the Benz research:
- Seventy-eight percent of employers cite getting employees engaged year-round among their biggest challenges, yet less than a third (28.9%) are communicating with employees year-round.
- Despite more than half of respondents (55.6%) reporting that the effectiveness of their benefits communication efforts has improved during the last three years, nearly half (45.4%) aren’t satisfied with their current communications strategy and an additional 28% are ambivalent.
- Employers’ top goals include executing a successful annual enrollment (60%), increasing workers’ use of preventive care (48%) and increasing employees’ 401(k) savings. Fewer than a quarter (24%) report meeting these goals last year; 18.8% aren’t sure.
- Fewer than a quarter (24.2%) are connecting their benefits strategy to their company’s bigger business strategy; less than half (46.9%) try.
- More than half (54.6%) do not document their benefits communication strategy. And 41% state they aren’t sure if their communication efforts are helping them meet their goals.
- More than two-thirds (68.3%) report budgets of less than $25,000 for benefits communication; 10.1% report budgets between $25,000 and $75,000.
The majority of these budgets aren’t being spent strategically. For example, two-thirds (66%) report print and postage costs (one-time non-renewable expenses) as consuming most of their budget.