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Employee benefits are key to retaining and attracting talent

Health & Benefits Blog

By Reto Ebnöther | September 14, 2022

2022 Global Benefits Attitudes Survey Switzerland
Wellbeing
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The whole world knows it, everyone is talking about it. What has been expected for a long time becomes more and more a reality: Companies are desperately looking for highly skilled talent and must differentiate themselves from other organisations with which they compete for talent. Offering the right benefits, however, not only plays a major role in attracting talent, but also, given the high turnover rate of employees, in retaining and engaging them to put in a great deal of effort beyond what is normally expected to help the organisation succeed. Our results from the Global Benefits Attitudes Survey 2022 show which benefits are particularly in demand on the talent market today.

35% of the participating employees are actively looking for a new role.

More than one third (35%) of the participating employees is actively looking for a new role and another 12% are open to offers. This is shown by the results of the "Global Benefits Attitudes" survey published by WTW, for which almost 800 employees in Switzerland were surveyed. Remarkable generation differences are visible, however: Compared to approximately half of the participating Generation Z (46%) that are actively looking for a new employer, only 28% of the "Boomers" generation are looking for a new job.

Many of the still in use remuneration systems that were developed by the older generations are less and less in line with the gradually more represented Generation Y and Z. Respectively, as the benefit offering no longer meets their expectations, representatives of these generations are increasingly willing to move jobs. Organisations that want to attract and retain young talent should keep this in mind and adapt their choice of benefits accordingly.

 

Big generation differences are also visible when it comes to attraction

Unsurprisingly, among all respondents, pay and bonus is the most important driver to attract new talent. Job security scores second for most generations apart from generation Z. Youngsters put less emphasis on job security when entering the world of work but require more flexibility, the opportunity to advance in their careers and a sense of purpose.

To meet the different needs, organisations should offer a selection of different benefits. In addition, it is necessary to communicate existing benefits packages in a targeted manner and to advise employees accordingly. The right choice of benefits can only improve recruitment efforts and employee retention if employees are aware of them. Thus, communication channels should be adapted to employees’ wants and needs. For example, 36% of respondents believe that apps play a crucial role in communicating benefits.

49% of employees want more support in the area of occupational pension provision (BVG).

Occupational pension provision is preferred benefit

According to the study, respondents would like their employer to focus on occupational pension provision (BVG). In fact, 49% were ranking support with their retirement in their top three, when being asked in which areas they want support from their employers. This is because long-term financial security is often provided by the employer. More than half of the participants (55%) said that their employer's pension plans meet their needs. Interestingly, this number even increased to 69% for employees that are regularly able to monitor their pension situation via an app. Surprisingly, two-thirds of those surveyed also say that they invest less in retirement provision than they ideally should.

Experience shows that employees are generally willing to save for their retirement, yet, without the support of the employer, it often remains a good intention. This means employees have great trust in their employer to manage or to have deposits managed responsibly.

Wellbeing increasingly important for all stakeholders

In addition to receiving financial support, approx. one quarter of the participating employees also want their employers to support them in the areas of emotional (27%) and physical (23%) wellbeing. Whereas pre pandemic the emotional and physical wellbeing was considered mainly a private matter, it has widely been understood that employers need to act now. Employees that are feeling well are more motivated, suffer less from stress and cause less absenteeism.

For example, 76% of employees who believe their employer cares about their wellbeing intent to stay with their current employer compared to only 44% who work for employers without a health focus. Looking at employee engagement and absenteeism paints an even clearer picture: 63% of the workforce at "health-focused" companies describe themselves as very engaged in their jobs, compared to only 13% in the comparison group. Employees who feel supported in their wellbeing report an average of 21 days lost due to absences or presenteeism which is 9 days less compared to the comparison group.

This means that wellbeing is not just another benefit. It is essential for a successful cooperation within the organisation and to win the battle for highly skilled talent on the labour market.

Author

Head of Health & Benefits Switzerland

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