This year’s open enrollment period has just ended for many companies. For HR professionals, that is the best time to begin thinking about next year’s benefits offerings. As you plan, it is helpful to look at your company’s workforce holistically from a demographic perspective.
Consider the main age group of employees you seek to attract and retain. Does your benefits package provide the key benefits that people in this age group want and need? At the same time, it’s important to make sure your benefits package doesn’t discourage workers in other age groups.
Here are some tips on how to review your benefits package for next year:
Calculate the average age of workers at your firm -- At Indeed, the average employee is 29 years old. When planning our benefits program, we think about life events people are experiencing around this age. While many are still single and may be repaying student loans, some are getting married and starting to have children. Attractive benefits include student loan repayment management, paid parental leave, adoption assistance and back-up childcare.
Don’t alienate other age groups – Make sure that you offer competitive benefits that appeal to all age groups. For example, comprehensive health insurance, wellness support programs, and retirement savings benefits. If your business allows for flexible schedules, benefits such as flex work arrangements and PTO may also be worth considering.
Know your workforce – Is your company located in an area where people tend to pursue healthy lifestyles? Or maybe a large percentage of your workforce has pets. Tailor your company’s benefits offerings accordingly. For example, pet health insurance may be a consideration. Discounted gym memberships and on-site wellness amenities are attractive to health-conscious employees.
Ask employees for feedback – The best way to ensure a benefits package fits well with company demographics is to ask employees. Surveys can have mixed results, but crowdsourcing is a relatively new phenomenon that has gained popularity. Similar to an on-line review platform like Yelp, internal crowdsourcing allows companies to collect feedback from employees in a more streamlined way.
Benchmark your benefits package – Another way to evaluate your benefits program is by benchmarking it against the offerings of firms of a similar size within your industry. Free benefits benchmark data is available through the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Private consulting firms and business associations also offer survey data, sometimes for a fee.