Health benefits

Salary and health benefits trump flexible working to win new hires

Diving brief:

  • More than half (56%) of workers surveyed cited salary and bonuses among the top factors that would be most important to them when considering a change of employer, followed by health benefits (39%), job security (33%), flexible working hours (31%) and retirement benefits (29%), according to a report by global consultancy Willis Towers Watson. Salary and bonuses were also the top factor cited by workers among the most important reasons for staying with their current employer, followed by job security, health benefits, flexible work arrangements and work that gives a “sense of purpose”.
  • A growing percentage – almost half – of employees surveyed said their company’s retirement (47%) and healthcare (48%) plans were a big reason they decided to work for their current employer. , compared to less than a third (29%) who cited the plans in 2015, according to the report.
  • Well over half of employees (60%) cited their employer’s retirement and healthcare benefits as an important reason for staying at their current company, compared to 48% who cited retirement in 2019 and only 54% who cited health care, in both cases marking a more than decade high in the role of benefits in retaining workers.

Overview of the dive:

Attracting and retaining employees are key issues for many CFOs who face the tightest job market in decades while battling rising costs on other fronts as inflation hits a four-year high. decades. Many CFOs aim to retain employees this year by giving them raises above 3%, but that may not be enough as inflation outpaces wage gains, experts say.

While employees still see salary as the “most compelling reason to stay or leave a company, health and retirement benefits have become a much bigger factor in their decision-making process,” said Monica Martin. , Senior Director of Retreat at WTW. A declaration. “In this tight labor market, organizations that understand the importance employees place on these core benefits and offer highly valued benefits programs can differentiate themselves in their efforts to become an employer of choice.”

Some of the top retirement options cited by respondents as offerings that would be most helpful to employees included: a guaranteed retirement benefit (cited by 62%), more generous retirement benefits in general (58%), medical benefits for retirees (53%) and flexibility. to use retirement money for short-term needs (37%).

Among the top options that would most improve flexible working arrangements, respondents cited more generous paid vacation and sick leave (50%), the option to work from home/anywhere (47%), the option to select when work takes place (45%) and policies that respect personal time outside of work (35%).

Respondents asked which health benefits would help them the most, citing a generally more generous healthcare plan (46%), health screenings and risk assessments (42%) and a more generous dental plan. generous (37%). And almost half of employees (46%) said they would forego a higher salary for a more generous healthcare plan, up from 36% in 2020.

The 2022 Global Benefits Attitudes Survey polled 9,600 U.S. employees of large and midsize private companies across a range of industries from December through January.