Thanks to the COVID pandemic and the Great Resignation, company executives and benefits managers have been working hard in an effort to figure out what they can do to recruit and retain the best talent they can find. Health insurance is always on the table, of course, but other benefits are starting to emerge as well. You can see many of the trends that companies are starting to follow in the 2022 Employee Benefits Survey conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management.
This post will not get into all the details of that survey, but there are some surprising statistics to look at. Below are five such statistics. Understanding what they mean could make the difference between a top-notch benefits package and one that is merely sufficient. It could mean the difference between recruiting top talent and watching it slip away.
1. Companies that offered mental health benefits during the pandemic: 91%
The survey revealed that nearly all companies in the U.S. offered some sort of mental health benefits during the COVID pandemic. Companies were just starting to talk about adding the benefits to their packages as open enrollment for 2019 got under way. But then the pandemic hit, and the need was immediately there. In the years since, mental health benefits have become a staple for many companies. Is the number still at 91%? Probably not. But it is probably still considerably higher than it was pre-pandemic.
2. Companies offering flexible work hours: 70%
Does your company offer flexible work hours? If not, it is in the minority. The fact that so many HR managers confirmed their companies offer flexible work hours shows just how important this particular benefit has become. Of course, there are some types of jobs that just aren’t open to flexibility. But where flexible schedules are doable, companies are making them happen.
3. Workers who say family care benefits are important: 70%
The COVID pandemic changed the way a lot of families live their daily lives. It also changed how kids go to school, how child care is provided for younger children, etc. Parents now need to look at things differently. And with that in mind, workers now say that family care benefits are important. They need help – financial and otherwise – taking care of kids at a time when even a minor cold can force them to stay home from school or daycare for days on end.
4. Workers who say leave benefits are important: 82%
Given how much work people missed during the COVID pandemic, it is understandable that so many would now say that leave benefits are important. Employees expect to be able to take leave to address family matters – especially when those matters involve a family member’s physical health or well being. The question for many companies is whether to offer paid leave. Unpaid leave is one thing; paid leave is an entirely different matter.
5. Company health plans that cover telemedicine: 93%
This final statistic is surprising in the sense that tele medicine wasn’t even in play prior to the pandemic. But according to Dallas-based firm Benefit Mall, a company that specializes in general agency and broker services, telemedicine is here to stay from a benefits perspective. Carriers are covering such services because the times dictate as much.
The vast majority of U.S. companies still offer standard health and retirement plans. But it is clear from survey data that employees expect more. Undoubtedly, that means employee benefits packages will probably look strikingly different a decade from now. Benefits are subject to evolution just like everything else in business.