As you compare the list of employee benefits that are being offered and used, you might notice a pattern:
Your employees are claiming only a fraction of what your organisation is offering.
You have recently launched an email campaign to promote a new benefit offering, but none of your employees has yet to use that benefit.
Why is this happening?
One of the reasons could be the discongruity between what you perceive and what your employees perceive in employee benefits.
In short, the benefits that may seem important to you may not be perceived as important to your employees. A study showed that nearly 50% of employees said their employers are not offering meaningful benefits that help.
So, what can you do in this case?
The answer is already in the problem statement. Organisations need to find out what are the most important benefits to employees, not to employers.
The question is, how to know which benefits are the most important to your employees?
The best way to know is to do an employee survey. But this could consume a lot of time and resources for medium-sized to big organisations if they don’t have a proper guide. This is why we’ve provided a step-by-step guide on how to do an employee benefits survey in this article.
Bonus: You’ll also learn what benefits employees appreciate the most in the market.
Employee benefits are compensations provided by the employer to the employee besides regular salary. The benefits come in many forms and are generally categorized as monetary and non-monetary.
Examples of monetary benefits are:
Examples of non-monetary benefits are:
Tip: Non-monetary doesn’t mean it doesn’t cost any money. It means the employees are not receiving money directly from the employer.
Tip: Surprisingly, employer-paid healthcare insurance is not part of the mandatory benefits but a whopping 56% of employers offer medical benefits.
Employee benefits are compensation offered by employers to employees other than salary, but it doesn’t mean it’s not important to them.
In fact, benefits may be a bigger factor in attracting and retaining talents than salary.
Here are some statistics that show the importance of benefits:
In conclusion, the salary is no longer the only driving factor when considering stay or to accept a job offer. Benefits and perks are beginning to take the limelight of employees' decisions.
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The most effective way to know is to ask your employees directly, but it is also important to know what the overall market perceives. This is important to attract new talents using the right benefits.
According to a study by Fractl, they gave 2,000 US workers a list of 17 benefits and asked them to weigh the benefits when choosing between a high-paying job versus a low-paying job.
The results might surprise you.
The top 5 benefits that employees consider as ‘the most important’ are:
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Well, what about Asia? Are Malaysia and Singapore also experiencing similar trends?
According to Human Resources Director (HRD), the top benefits trend in Asia are leaning towards:
To conclude, the top 5 benefits and the trends in Asia focus on employees’ well-being and benefits flexibility.
Now, you have a general direction on which benefits to focus on, let’s look at each step to conduct an employee benefits survey.
Like Fractl, the organisation gave a list of 17 benefits for the study. Likewise, you can list down 10 to 20 benefits commonly offered in the market and let your employees choose.
Here’s a list of benefits to help you get started:
The most common grouping is by their age, typically categorized into Traditionalists, Baby boomers, Gen X, Millennials, and Gen Z.
You can also group them based on their gender, marital status, country of origin, departments, or health needs.
Employee benefits should enrich the company culture. Find out which benefit does not support your culture or impossible to implement (for example, you can’t offer stock options if you’re not a public-listed company).
You should avoid double-barreled and vague questions. They can easily demotivate your employees and reduce the response rate.
Survey questions should be specific, short, no-brainer.
How long should your survey be?
According to SurveyMonkey, which surveyed 100,000 surveys, they found that respondents take shorter time answering each question if the survey has more questions. The sweet spot is between 3 - 15 questions.
If you’re wondering what questions to ask, you can take some from the samples below:
The survey answers should give you a clear idea of what’s working and what’s not working with your employee benefits plan, whether your employees understand the benefits available to them, and which benefits are useful and unimportant to your employees.
Once you have identified the nuances, you can then take appropriate actions to ensure your employees are getting meaningful benefits from you.
Depending on the situation, you might need to polish your employee benefits communication plan or remove benefits that don’t serve your employees.
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