Top benefits challenges:
- Offering robust benefits while staying within budget/cost constraints
- Understanding the changing health care landscape
- 37% say controlling health/medical insurance costs is the most important issue facing their organizations.
- 18% say they don’t understand health care reform legislation very/at all well; another 54% say they only understand the legislation somewhat well.
Top benefits objectives:
- Retaining employees
- Taking care of employees
- Increasing employee satisfaction
- 50% believe their overall benefits package is equally or slightly less competitive than that of others in their industry.
- 55%, the highest percentage among employers surveyed, believe it is extremely/very important to tailor benefits offerings based on employees’ levels or life stages; however, only 43% do so.
- 56% of education employers do not have a company-sponsored wellness program.
- 58% of employers believe that their current benefits package meets employees’ needs extremely/very well; however, only 29% survey employee preferences or needs when it comes to benefits options.
- 56% of educational organizations use a broker or benefits consultant.
- 84% of HR decision-makers at educational organizations say it is important to tailor their benefits communications to employees at different levels or life stages; 28% do so.
- 39%, the highest percentage among employers surveyed, use email to communicate with employees about benefit options.
- 51% say their organizations communicate with employees about benefits only somewhat/not very effectively.
- While 59% say their employees understand their organization’s benefits communications, only 23% of education employers survey employee understanding of benefits communication.
- Nearly 3 in 10 (29%) education organizations only communicate with employees at open enrollment or new hire enrollment.
- 19% agree their employees are not adequately informed about benefits choices.
Top voluntary benefits challenges:
- Getting employees to understand their different options
- Having employees with an interest in purchasing voluntary benefits
- 34% of education employers offer voluntary insurance, and only 6% say they would not consider adding new voluntary insurance benefits.
- 23% incorrectly believe payouts from voluntary benefits can be used only for specified medical expenses. Another 15% incorrectly believe that employers pay all or most of voluntary insurance premiums.
- 24% say their workers are not very/not at all knowledgeable about voluntary benefits.
Decision-makers at educational organizations believe an overall benefits package has a major influence on:
- Job satisfaction
- Loyalty to employer
- Willingness to refer friends
- When asked if employees take full advantage of company benefits, 37% say they only somewhat agree. An additional 19% say they somewhat/strongly disagree.
- 64% of decision-makers at educational organizations believe personal issues decrease employees’ ability to concentrate.
- 46% believe adequate insurance coverage would help employees cope with personal/health issues while on the job.
- 60% agree that employees should be more engaged in making benefits decisions.
- 54% say they somewhat or strongly agree that employees are satisfied with overall benefits offerings; however, only 32% survey employee satisfaction with benefits offerings.
The 2012 Aflac WorkForces Report was conducted January 24–February 23, 2012, by Research Now on behalf of Aflac.