Protecting basic needs
In our recent research we found that employees value health and financial benefits the most. When asked to choose the top three most valued employee benefits, overall:
- 48% voted private medical insurance
- 36% said life insurance
- 31% chose critical illness
In comparison with lifestyle benefits, only 13% voted for childcare vouchers in their top three most valued benefits and only 7.5% chose cycle to work schemes.
It can be difficult for employers to know for sure exactly what their employees want, and it’s easy to assume that they will prefer useful, every day and fun benefits over the serious stuff. However, these results show that there is a clear hierarchy of needs when it comes to employee benefits, meaning group risk and healthcare benefits are a high priority for employees.
It’s therefore possible to argue that employees are thinking seriously about protecting their basic needs, safety and security, before they consider lifestyle benefits.
You don’t need to be taking a stab in the dark when thinking about their employee benefits offering. While this research provides a guide to employee preferences, it’s no substitute for asking your own employees what they want.
Collaboration between HR and employees at an early stage in purchasing employee benefits can help employers to ensure they are providing benefits that will be valued by employees, making the investment worthwhile.