Offering employee benefits is a big part of attracting and retaining qualified employees today. So if your small business is going to the trouble and expense of paying for employee benefits, don’t you want to play that up to current and potential employees?
Of course you do, says Beyond the Usual Benefits, a report from Unum on the, well, benefits of employee benefits. Employees who understand the effectiveness of their benefits are more likely to be:
- Pleased with their benefits package
- Happy with their employers
- Engaged in their work
Specifically, employees who feel well-educated about their benefits are more likely to go the extra mile for their employers, believe their employers care about them and stay with the same company even if offered comparable pay and benefits elsewhere.
The five-year study found that while more companies are offering voluntary benefits to employees, just one-third of employees feel that they are well-educated about the benefits their employers offer.
How can you do a better job of educating employees about their employee benefits?
- Tap into your benefits’ providers’ resources. Don’t just hand your employees a packet of information and be done with it. Find out if your provider offers online tutorials or videos to explain the benefits or if an expert can come out and speak to your staff about how to maximize their benefits.
- Provide materials to fit different learning styles. People learn visually, others by hearing and other by doing (hands-on). Offer materials to fit each style, such as videos or printed materials with lots of photos for visual learners; video, podcasts or a live presentation for auditory learners; and interactive websites or worksheets for hands-on types.
- Give employees time to review their materials and make decisions. Employees need time to read or interact with the information you give them, form questions, get answers and make decisions. Don’t spring the information on them a few days before an important deadline to sign up for benefits; give them at least a month to digest what they need to know.
Last, but not least, educate potential employees about the benefits your company offers by promoting your employee benefits on your website as well as in job listings. Curious about the Top Companies for Compensation & Benefits? Check out the Glassdoor list.