As 2017 gets underway and a new political administration takes over, businesses across the country are likely to confront a variety of changes in the workplace, including shifts in the employee benefits sector.
In its 14th Annual U.S. Employee Benefit Trends Study, MetLife identified five areas businesses should keep an eye on as the year progresses. One such area is personalization, which refers to an increasing need for businesses to offer a more diverse range of benefits to their workers.
Customization of Benefits Can Help with Employee Retention
In today’s competitive workplace, studies show that businesses that offer customized employee benefits have an edge when it comes to employee retention.
According to the MetLife study, which examined employee benefit trends across the boomer, Gen X, and millennial workforce, personalization of benefits promises to be an important draw for businesses looking to attract and retain top talent in 2017.
The study showed that workers across the 3 generations placed a high value on employee benefits, with 70 percent saying that personalized benefits are likely to increase their loyalty to businesses and half agreeing that access to benefits helps them worry less about health and financial issues.
Workers Place High Value on Medical and Prescription Drug Coverage
Workers also identified medical and prescription drug coverage as “must-haves,” with 89 percent selecting medical benefits as important and 71 percent saying prescription drug coverage topped their list.
Businesses Can Offer Personalized Health Benefits
With so much employee emphasis placed on medical and prescription drug coverage, businesses interested in employee retention should consider incorporating robust health benefits in their offerings. One way to do this is with a Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA).
Small business owners with fewer than 50 employees can also take advantage of a new type of HRA called the qualified small employer HRA (QSEHRA). Brought about by federal legislation passed in December 2016, the QSEHRA allows employees to buy their own health insurance and receive tax-free reimbursement from their company (up to a certain monthly amount).
In the race to acquire the best workers, businesses that listen to their employees and personalize their benefit packages “will emerge clear winners in the talent war,” according to the MetLife study.
With so many workers identifying medical and prescription drug benefits as must-haves, business owners should consider including HRAs as part of their benefit offerings.
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