Although the resumption of face-to-face work signals a return to normalcy for some, for millions of employees, it is just the beginning of a new era of employment. In this new landscape, employees are putting more emphasis on the holistic benefits they’ll be getting post-pandemic. This is in contrast to pre-pandemic, wherein most employees focused on the professional perks they’d be privy to. Moves are being made in the right direction with 40% of companies in the US increasing their childcare-leave options. Through this, employers hope to foster better job tenure and employee satisfaction.
Ranging from benefits that cover fitness to finances, contemporary employee benefits are proving to be more well-rounded and designed to create more long-lasting impacts. Although specific employee benefit programs vary per industry and organization, these are the most popular categories of benefits that employers have begun to offer and employees have come to expect:
Whereas mental health was considered practically taboo at work pre-pandemic, today, it’s a priority for workers and leaders alike. Presently, over 76% of employees say that mental health benefits are a critical must-have that bosses should openly offer. On top of this, roughly 42% of employees report that having access to mental health benefits can influence them to stay at their current workplace. This is in stark contrast to the 27% of employees coming from companies who don’t offer this benefit. In response to this demand, 45% of human resources managers in the U.S. have said they’ve added mental health resources or assistance. This includes offering training for resilient leadership, stress management, and recognizing mental health days. By offering these, employees and employers aim to address rising concerns like burnout and depression.
Over the last two years, work-life balance has become a buzzword among employees looking to regain a more well-rounded personal and professional life. During the height of the pandemic, employers tried to assuage this demand by offering simple mindfulness initiatives. However, now that employees are once again readjusting their lifestyles to return to work, post-pandemic benefits are expected to play a big part in their future decisions.
A new survey of 4,600 current workers reveals that 68% have considered changing careers in favor of better work-life balance. For new recruits, applicants have even said that they’d opt for a job that has a better work-life balance over one that pays more. Because work-life balance is still a fairly relative idea, most employers are shaping their work-life benefits around flexibility. Some of the most popular work-life balance perks presently offer paid time off policies, company-sponsored family outings, and childcare. In the long run, work-life balance benefits are expected to make the transition back to the office smoother and more positive.
Given the new challenges and demands that the pandemic has created for employees, employers must be agile and mindful of the benefits they provide. Considering that the workforce is becoming more aware of the perks and support they deserve inside and outside of the office, companies who wish to thrive (instead of just survive) in the New Normal need to keep up.
Following the economic challenges of the pandemic, the Great Resignation has seen nearly five million people quit every month in search of greener pastures. In response to this, 46% of companies have started offering financial wellness benefits. Amongst the most popular financial wellness benefits are access to a financial advisor and emergency savings help. Since financial advisors are trained with analytical skills that allow them to make sound assessments and suggestions, employees can look for assistance when making important investment, budgeting, and debt management decisions. And because many financial advisors are also Certified Financial Planners (CFPs), they’re bound by a code of ethics that protects clients. This is highly beneficial for most employees who, on their own, typically have fewer assets and means to hire an advisor themselves.
Meanwhile, in terms of emergency savings help, workplace emergency savings are becoming much more attractive than just a 401(k). Since so many employees lack a basic emergency fund, they’re also much less likely to save towards a 401(k) where withdrawals may carry penalties, fees, and delays. This is especially prevalent among women and minorities who are forced to use most of their money on daily expenses and unforeseen costs. As such, employers who offer workplace emergency savings on top of retirement savings benefits are able to bridge immediate and future financial goals. Through these programs, employers hope to help their workforce gain back a sense of financial stability.
If your organization is interested in learning more about how employer rewarded emergency savings has helped companies improve retention by 25%+ and boost productivity, head over to our calculator tool to see how much you could be saving by offering Sunny Day Fund to your employees.
This article was originally written by Rozellia Jianna for the Sunny Day Fund Team