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Springbuk Blog - Employee Wellness Programs Are Becoming More Important to Recruit Top Talent

Unemployment trending downward is almost always a good sign, but when it does, the market for talented employees grows more competitive as employers fight to attract top talent. Now more than ever, employers need attractive compensation offerings to make sure they secure the best employees possible, but attracting top talent is about more than just money.

Increasingly, employees are searching for employers with wellness programs, offerings, and benefits that complement their lifestyle when deciding their next career move. The market for employee benefits is changing in big ways, and this goes beyond just having an adequate health insurance plan. These are three ways that wellness programs and employee benefits are changing the way that top talent looks at a prospective job.

Access to New Technology is Changing Benefits

Across almost every industry, new and innovative technology has given consumers the ability to directly access data and information that had previously been inaccessible. Traditional   processes often resulted in communication breakdowns between the data provider and the end-user. Healthcare was a prime example of this. Ten, or even 5 years ago, the information infrastructure didn’t exist to consistently bring healthcare data directly to the patients who were looking for it. That data was, most of the time because of necessity and security, stored in systems that only healthcare practitioners and their partners had access to.

Employers need to need to take notice, because employees are asking for this level of benefits management: three in four millennial employees want education and access to their workplace benefits to be easier. This means choosing healthcare and wellness professionals with portals for members and their dependents to be able to access claims, prescription and other medical data, but this can be expanded to other benefits as well. There are many innovative solutions for employee 401(k)s, payroll, and other aspects of the workplace that now give employees data traditionally haven’t had much insight into. Modern 401(k) providers don’t shy away from the rates that they charge, or where employees investments are going. The payroll industry is currently going through a push that gives employees new features to be able to decide where their money goes more easily. Investing in a new software solution that gives employees more data than they had before will no doubt be welcome by most team members.

Top Talent is More Aware of Benefits as Differentiators

The changing face of the benefits space shouldn’t be construed as employees caring less about salary and compensation—these aspects will always be important to anyone looking to change their current situation. Rather, employees look at things like wellness benefits as the key differentiators between options for their next job. According to a recent study by Deloitte, there are three wellness benefits that stand out to employees.

  1. Flexible Schedules - Employees classify flexible work schedules as the key wellness benefit in companies that they look to join. 86% of the employees surveyed said that this was their most important wellness benefit, but only 50% of employers offered it. Even if it might not be the first thing that comes to mind when considering workplace wellness benefits, surveyed employees said that having a flexible schedule can go a long way toward easing mental stress when life throws a surprise their way. Allowing employees to come in a little later or leave a little earlier as long as work is getting done can go a long way in bolstering company talent.

  2. Telecommuting - In a similar vein, employees look for “work from home” policies when evaluating potential workplaces. 70% of employees value this benefit, which is a big gap from the 27% of workplaces that allow it. These two benefits are specifically useful for wellness purposes, giving employees the flexibility they need to make sure they see their doctors and wellness professionals on a regular basis.

  3. Spaces designated for wellness and reimbursement for wellness expenses - The third most important wellness benefit was a tie between workplaces spaces designated for wellness and reimbursement for wellness expenses. Onsite areas such as gyms, meditation rooms, clinics, and even nap rooms send a message to employees that their overall health is being taken seriously. The same goes for reimbursement policies.

The key here is providing policies and benefits that make employees feel cared for and supported in more ways than just salary.

Experience and Engagement are Available in Wellness

Increasingly, employees are taking a more holistic look into the what they receive from their workplace for the work they provide, especially once they accept an offer. The employee’s experience of joining and being a part of a company is a major factor of whether that new talent will stay with a company. Inherent company culture, more than salary and benefits, has been shown to improve the chances of higher-earning employees staying after accepting an offer.

Expect to see this trend of employee engagement continue to grow as the average age of the workplace trends younger in the near future. Children who have grown up with the internet are extremely savvy and respond well to tailored engagement techniques. Investing in systems that track employee data across multiple uses can make a big impression on new talent who are looking to decide where to work. Through the prism of employee wellness, exceptional engagement and experience would be investing in a platform that tracks multiple streams of health data to help improve employee wellness while simultaneously cutting costs for the employer at large. Engaged and intertwined systems that make benefits easier to access and understand are necessary for attracting today’s top talent.

If your company is looking for a platform that can help you deliver wellness benefits to your member population, Springbuk could be the perfect fit for your organization.

Eric Reesspringbuk