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Press Release

WTW Benefit Trends survey finds areas of disconnect between employer priorities and employee needs

September 12, 2023

Health and Benefits

LONDON, September 12, 2023 – The latest research by WTW, a leading global advisory, broking and solutions company, found that almost half of UK employees (45%) favour workplace benefits that support long-term finances and retirement. Yet, more than half of employers have focused on providing health benefits (57%) and mental health support (56%), revealing a potential mismatch in priorities.

According to WTW’s Benefit Trends Survey, employers say their benefit strategies are being driven by a desire to meet the needs of all employees (56%) and improve employee wellbeing (46%). Until now, this has resulted in benefit programmes that focus on physical and mental health, as well as broader wellbeing initiatives that enhance employees’ careers and align with flexible work environments.

Stephanie Parton-Corr, GB Health & Benefits Wellbeing Lead at WTW says “As concerns around financial wellbeing are growing for many employees in the current economic climate, greater support provided by employers is highly valued.

“Increasingly, the employers WTW speaks with have recognised the strong link between financial wellbeing and other areas of wellbeing. Poor financial wellbeing can affect an employee’s productivity and engagement in the same way as poor mental or physical health, so a balanced approach needs to be taken.

“Therefore, financial wellbeing is fast becoming a priority area for employers wishing to meaningfully look after their employees’ overall health and wellbeing.”

Financial wellbeing is fast becoming a priority area for employers wishing to meaningfully look after their employees’ overall health and wellbeing.”

Stephanie Parton-Corr | GB Health & Benefits Wellbeing Lead at WTW

With competition for talent cited by three quarters (77%) of employers as a key issue influencing their benefits strategy, employers will do well to take heed of the growing demand from workforces for increased financial wellbeing support.

Indeed, when it comes to financial wellbeing, the research shows that 49% of employers are already looking to improve their benefits positions specifically relating to financial wellbeing and short-term finances, and 59% are showing a desire to be above market in this area over the next two years, when compared to their main competitors.

Stephanie Parton-Corr says: “It’s important that employers can meet employees at whatever stage they’re at and recognise that an individual’s financial wellbeing does not correlate to salary and can change at any time, due to personal life events or circumstances as well as in reaction to broader general economic factors.

“Thankfully, there is a whole host of financial wellbeing solutions available for employers to offer to their workforces which can be tailored to suit any budget and workforce size. This could be about promoting existing financial information services and discounts, embedded within employee assistance programmes or other benefits, running education campaigns involving seminars and webinars, exploring digital wellbeing solutions partners who can offer whole-of-workforce apps and personalised education platforms to transform employee financial wellbeing, and much more.”

About the survey

WTW surveyed 339 UK organisations across a broad range of industries about their benefit strategies between 1 March 2023 and 14 April 2023 for its 2023 Benefit Trends Survey.

About WTW

At WTW (NASDAQ: WTW), we provide data-driven, insight-led solutions in the areas of people, risk and capital. Leveraging the global view and local expertise of our colleagues serving 140 countries and markets, we help organizations sharpen their strategy, enhance organizational resilience, motivate their workforce and maximize performance.

Working shoulder to shoulder with our clients, we uncover opportunities for sustainable success—and provide perspective that moves you.

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