Do your employees know what benefits your company provides? Thanks to some great research and studies, we know most employees don’t understand what benefits they have available.
According to a study done by ADP, 80 percent of human resource decision makers feel it’s important for employees to understand their full benefits package. If you don’t have a corporate employee benefits communications plan in place, it’s time to get one created now.
Should I Have A Corporate Employee Benefits Communications Plan?
Most employers spent a lot of time, effort and resources making sure that their employees have the very best possible benefits. The goal is to make sure employees are healthy and happy as this directly correlates with work performance.
According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, companies in the United States spend around $0.43 for every dollar of payroll on employee benefits. This includes but is not limited to;
- Prescription Insurance
- Stock Options
- Retirement Funds
- Paid Time Off
- Employee Assistance Programs
Even with all of these, this doesn’t include the other benefits and perks that employers invest in to make their workplace as healthy and productive as possible. Organizations also invest into employee wellness programs, corporate discount programs, work attire, events, and the list goes on. The big elephant in the room, “benefits.” Despite all the advancements that we’ve made in medicine, employee benefits costs continue to rise.
The Society for Human Resources Management released a great report, it’s called the 2016 Employee Benefits Research Report. It concludes that employers are giving employees great benefits packages, more so now than any other time in an effort to increase employee retention rates and improve recruitment in the competitive landscape.
Communicating Employee Benefits
The big problem is companies are failing to communicate the value of their programs to employees. If your employees are not aware of the value your benefits package gives them, how can you expect them to take advantage of it?
The good news, you have a ton of awesome resources at your fingertips to communicate your employee benefits with your whole company. You want to make sure employees are aware of them and understand the value. This is why you have to articulate the value of your employee benefits program.
Whether it’s handled in person or virtually by your benefit plan administrators, benefit meetings are an effective way to get plan information and questions answered fast. Furthermore, you want to think about different ways you can explain your benefits to employees, especially as it pertains to new hires. For example, for new hires, you should make it required that all new employees talk with a benefit plan administrator before choosing a specific plan.
You can use your on-site benefits administrator to schedule meetings with employees that have specific questions about using benefits. When you’re having open enrollments for benefits, make sure your plan administrative team is available to highlight any updates to benefits. You should encourage your employees to attend such meetings.
Many organizations rely on printed materials to share employee group benefits information. This is very effective because employees can immediately get information at any time of the year. When you’re doing open enrollment and employee onboarding, this is a great time to introduce new marketing campaigns.
Printed benefits documents are important to have and it should have a detailed explanation of benefits as supplied by plan administrators. You should create documents for employees that include coverage amounts, rate schedules, and basic benefit details.
If you happen to have a multicultural workforce, you’ll need to make sure you have printed materials for each language.
Digital media is a great way to immediately give your employees benefit details. You have many channels at your disposal, website, social media platforms, live video, texts, emails, instant messaging, mobile, apps, bots, and the list goes on. You can use all these digital media tools to deliver your messages to employees.
For example, if you have an employee wellness program and you’re struggling to get employees to participate, you can leverage digital media to get the word out. You can create a Facebook group or LinkedIn group for your company. You can use the social media platforms you have. You can use a website or forum for employees, the options are endless.
Digital media is also a great way to engage with your employees. You can deliver content through all of these channels and it’s a powerful way to show the value of your benefits packages.
While we hit on social media for a minute above, we know how valuable social media can be for your communications. Most employees find social media to be a great way to deal with HR. If you don’t have social media pages, you need to get started on building one right away.
Now, most of you likely have a business page or profile. Depending on where your employees hangout, it may be better to have a Facebook page for some while others may be better off with LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram or YouTube. Because employees prefer to connect with your company on the platform of their choice, we’d recommend having an account for all the major social media outlets.
To ensure ROI from your efforts on social media, we’d recommend using your marketing team with your employee benefits administrators. Between the two departments, you can create a benefits message that encourages employees to participate while also clearly demonstrating the value of benefits.
Social proof can go a long way encouraging employees to engage, so make sure you’re sharing case studies and employee reviews.
Corporate Websites And Benefits Portal
Most corporate companies have web-based benefit portal for hosting employee benefits information and resources. This is a great secure way for employees to share important benefits information. This allows you to have a process for employees to enroll for benefits also. To a certain extent, you can automate a lot of your enrollment with a portal.
Total Compensation Statements
If you want to make a bigger impact communicating benefits, many experts recommend organizations send out at least (1) total compensation statement per year. For those of you that don’t know what that is, it’s a document that is organized by salary, benefits, and other perks that the employer offers to employees. It’s a document that shows how much the company is investing in every employee they have.
Research has shown that most employees are not aware of how much workplace benefits help them, so this can be a good conversation starter. If you don’t know how to create a total compensation statement, there’s a wide range of vendors online that can help you.
Messaging And Communications
Your company may have great employee benefits but if your message is off, your employees will never know. If you’re not communicating your benefits on a regular basis, you’re never going to see a high participation rate.
This is where Kadalyst can help. We have a wide range of communication strategies we can help your organization use to communicate employee benefits to your staff.
We’ve worked with some of the largest brands in the world, helping them effectively communicate benefit packages to employees. If you’re struggling to get employee participation, we can help. If you’re struggling to articulate the value of your benefits package, we can help with that too.
If so, don’t hesitate to reach out. You can talk to our team directly at 503-512-5175 or through our contact form.