DUBLIN, 7 JUNE 2022 – Just over half (57%) of employees in Ireland say that their benefits package meets their needs according to WTW’s latest Employee Attraction & Retention research, with a significant majority of men (65%) stating that their needs are being met, compared to less than half of female employees (49%).
With companies facing increasing challenges in retaining and attracting talent, improving their benefit package could be the key to meeting this challenge. The research found that engagement is higher, and employees are more likely to remain with their employer where their benefits package meets their needs.
Of those employees in Ireland who intend to remain with their employers for the next two years, 82% believe that their benefits package meets their needs. However, there are employees who are unhappy in their current role, and 49% of those who feel stuck would move employer if their benefits needs are not met, representing a significant risk to businesses in Ireland.
The importance of retirement and health benefits as an attraction and retention tool is at its highest in a decade. Retirement is the top area of benefits people want more help with from their employer.
54% of employees in Ireland today state that their company’s retirement programme was an important reason they decided to work for their current employer, compared to 27% in 2015. 65% of employees identified their company’s health care programme as a reason why they decided to work for their current employer, an increase from 27% in 2015.
Retirement and health care programmes are also key to retention. 61% of employees in Ireland said that their company’s retirement plan is an important reason why they will stay with their employer, compared to 41% in 2015. 66% stated that health care is a key reason why they will stay with their employer, an increase from 36% in 2015.
Commenting on the research, David Glennon, Director in Health and Benefits at WTW, said, “There is a pressure for employers to find ways to better meet their workers’ needs, particularly when just over half of employees in Ireland are positive about their benefits package. It is evident from the research and from what we are seeing in the market that health and retirement benefits are now viewed by employees as essential benefits that a company must offer their employees
In an increasingly competitive market employers must look to the strength of their overall packages in relation to the needs of their staff.”David Glennon | Director, Health & Benefits, Ireland
“In an increasingly competitive market employers must look to the strength of their overall packages in relation to the needs of their staff. Benefits packages that meet the needs of employees result in greater retention and are linked to greater work engagement. The key going forward for companies in Ireland is to instil confidence in benefits selections and this is strongly linked to effective support from employees.”
Cost, security, choice and ease of use are the key factors in how employees assess their benefits. Of those employees happy with their benefits package, value (27%), security (26%) and easily understood (22%) are the main positives cited.
While not reflected in the research, currently we are seeing an increased focus on diversity, equality and inclusion in the workforce and employees in Ireland.”David Glennon | Director, Health & Benefits, Ireland
Commenting on the learnings for employers in Ireland, David Glennon said, “This survey has shown the importance of flexibility and choice in terms of benefits for employees in Ireland. While not reflected in the research, currently we are seeing an increased focus on diversity, equality and inclusion in the workforce and employees in Ireland want benefits to be more inclusive and representative of the modern workforce. We anticipate that this will only grow in importance in the future and it is a factor that employers must consider when attracting and retaining employees in Ireland.”
WTW’s 2022 Benefits Preferences research was conducted during December 2021 and January 2022 as part of the wider Global Benefits Attitudes Survey. Respondents include 828 employees in Ireland from large and midsize private employers, representing a broad range of industries.