Attracting top talent with competitive benefits will always be a top priority for employers. In the past, an appealing package may have included just retirement and health insurance. Today, with millennials overtaking Generation X as the largest generation in the U.S. workforce, employers will have to become more creative and versatile. It will be important to customize packages that meet non-traditional needs and leverage new technology.
One important trend to consider in this new environment is offering voluntary benefits.
An Aflac Workforces Report found that 88 percent of employees see voluntary benefits as part of a comprehensive benefits package. Employees often pay for them through payroll deferral making them an attractive low-cost option for employers. Traditional examples include life insurance, vision, dental, disability, and accident insurance. These days, voluntary benefits are stepping outside of the box.
For example, pet insurance is one of the fastest growing voluntary benefits. Some employers are addressing generational differences by offering other benefits, such as financial planning and career development,in addition to student-debt programs. The availability of voluntary benefits can have a profound impact on employees and employers alike. The Aflac study found that employees with voluntary benefits were 19 percent more likely to be satisfied with their job and 14 percent less likely to look for another one. Employees with voluntary benefits also felt more confident about their financial future, a chief concern for millennials. In the end, having a menu of voluntary benefits can provide a low-cost boost to employee morale.
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