Fifty-three percent of employees say they’re actively looking for new opportunities or at risk of leaving, according to a new study. And if you want to keep them it’s going to take boosting two benefits.
The two key benefits to attract and keep employees: health and retirement benefits, according to a study by WTW, a global advisory, broking and solutions company. The study surveyed more than 9,600 U.S. employees.
It also found employees’ desire for these benefits make them willing to pay for them. During the pandemic employees weren’t willing to shell out their hard-earned cash for these benefits. But now those willing to pay has rebounded, as long as the benefits are worth it.
Retirement, health benefits
Specifically, the study revealed that 60% of the respondents said their employers’ retirement benefits were “an important reason” they stayed with their current employer. Whereas, only 41% gave it as a reason in 2010. And 47% said they joined their current employer because of the retirement programs and 48% said it was because of the healthcare benefits, which were 25% and 32% in 2010, respectively.
As for how many in the survey are willing to pay for these generous benefits, 59% said they’d pay more for larger, more generous retirement benefits. In 2020 that number was 54%. And 46% said they’d pay more for a more generous healthcare plan versus 36% in 2020.
“The survey also highlights a strong desire employees have for increased flexibility and choice in their benefits programs, with many employees saying that this should be a priority for their company,” said Monica Martin, senior director, Retirement, WTW. “Employers that can effectively respond to this challenge will be well positioned to meet a broader suite of employees’ needs and increase the overall value and appreciation their employees have for the benefits offering.”
Flexible work benefits
After retirement, respondents ranked flexible work (39%) as their second benefit priority.
As for retirement, 62% of respondents want a guaranteed retirement benefit, 58% want more generous retirement benefits, and 53% are interested in retiree medical benefits. And 50% of the flexible work group want more generous PTO and sick leave, 47% want the option to work anywhere they want, and 45% want to choose when they work.
Mental health benefits
Thirty-three percent of respondents also ranked “managing employee health” as an important issue. Forty-six percent want a more generous health plan, 42% want health screenings and risk assessments to help them manage their health, and 37% want a more generous dental plan.
Of course, people want help with their emotional well-being too, nowadays. Fifty-three percent of respondents who consider it a top priority want mental health days to manage their emotional health, 40% want stress and resilience management support programs, and 39% want more generous coverage of mental health services and medications.
“Employees are increasingly turning to their employer for more help and support with their benefits. In turn, employers that want to remain competitive are best served by regularly reevaluating their health and retirement benefit packages both in terms of value and flexibility in order to meet the evolving needs of their diverse workforces,” said Julie Stone, managing director, Health and Benefits, WTW.