Employee Benefits Plans Aren't One Size Fits All

People together handsEmployee benefits plans can’t be based on a one size fits all model. Today’s workforce is very diverse, and because of that diversity, management has to devise a benefits plan that addresses the various goals and concerns of very different groups of people. Offering a broad array of benefits is an important strategy for attracting and retaining top talent.

When planning benefits packages, one thing businesses need to keep in mind is that staff is likely to include members of as many as four or five generations. People at different stages of life often have very different priorities, needs, and expectations, and trying to offer the same benefits to all these people will lead to a failure to remain competitive in attracting the employers.


Stages of Life

Millennial WorkerThe most important benefits can be vastly different for people who are in an array of stages of life.Those just starting out are likely to be interested in options such as tuition reimbursement or childcare, while those who are nearing retirement will want to be sure they have taken advantage of all possible retirement benefits and also may be interested in critical illness benefits.

Millennials may be interested in a wide variety of benefit options, such as home and auto insurance, financial wellness tools, and life and accident insurance. All age groups will likely be interested in the possibility of flexible work hours or an ability to telecommute.


Tailoring Benefits Toward Individuals

A potentially powerful model for approaching benefits is to create a cafeteria-style option for choosing benefits. Using this model, employees could create their own benefits package by selecting what is most important to them. They would have the opportunity of considering wellness, medical, dental, childcare, time-off and many other possible options.

Tailoring perks for individuals is the most modern approach to creating benefits packages. This approach allows your employees to choose their form of compensation. It gives people more control over their benefits as well as offering cost transparency about their company's contribution.


Knowing What Benefits Are Most Important

Coworkers Talking At Desk About Employee Benefits And InsuranceDetermining the best benefit options for a diverse staff requires a clear understanding of what is meaningful to employees. The best way to do that is by asking employees for feedback and paying attention to what they have to say.

Employees are aware that benefits are an important part of their total compensation, and most are interested in having benefits tailored to their needs. A one-size-fits-all approach gives employees the feeling that they are not valued, and they are likely to look for an employer who does communicate an interest in offering significant compensation; including individualized benefits.


Empowering Employees

Your employees probably span a broad range of ages, backgrounds, and cultures. What's relevant and motivating to some of your employees may be of little or no interest to others. It's unrealistic to think that the same benefits package will motivate widely different people.

Employees who can customize their benefits are likely to take advantage of preventative health and wellness options. Empowering employees to get healthy and stay healthy lowers the cost of annual premiums, which benefits both employees and employers.

Employers have to find the best compensation options to motivate the best workers to stay at the company, and this includes evaluating the benefit choices that are available to them. A one-size-fits-all approach won't work, and if the benefits that are most meaningful to particular individuals aren't an option, there is a good chance they will take their talent to another company.

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