In the ever-evolving workplace, the state of employee benefits, including what employees expect from their employers and what companies should be offering, is seeing significant change. At the same time, HR teams grappling with age-old challenges like admin-heavy processes and ineffective communications, have more opportunities now than ever to embrace technology to improve efficiencies, underscoring the imperative for organisations to modernise their benefits offerings.
In this blog, we explore the key employee benefits trends emerging in the modern, digital-first workplace, and how companies can leverage technology to improve their employee benefits, increase employee engagement, and ultimately remain competitive in a changing world.
The landscape of modern employee benefits
Employee benefits have evolved significantly in today's workplace, reflecting changing social norms, employee expectations, and advancements in technology. In this dynamic landscape, organisations are increasingly expanding their benefits offerings, with a notable emphasis on non-traditional benefits such as mental health services, remote work allowances, and professional development opportunities.
The top-rated benefits increasingly being sought out by employees, according to our State of Employee Benefits 2024 report, include:
- Flexible working (either hybrid, remote, or alternative hours)
- Training and development support
- Regular salary reviews, with attainable targets
However, shifting employee demands aren’t the only thing influencing change in employee benefits. HR challenges, including administrative burdens and communication shortfalls, also underpin the need for organisations to modernise their benefits offerings. For example, HR teams can save up to 12% of their admin time by using automation to streamline their benefits processes.
These advances in technology are spearheading the employee benefits trends we currently see emerging, offering many opportunities for HR managers and employees alike when it comes to the modern employee benefits landscape.
The importance of keeping up with the latest employee benefits trends
Keeping up with the latest employee benefits trends through a comprehensive platform is essential for organisations to enhance talent attraction, retention, and overall employee satisfaction. A well-tailored benefits package not only distinguishes a company in the talent market but also fosters a positive workplace culture, attracting top-tier professionals.
At the same time, the risks of not providing relevant benefits include losing skilled talent to competitors and diminishing employee motivation and performance, which makes staying current a key imperative for organisations looking to stay competitive and foster a highly engaged workforce.
Top employee benefits trends and technologies to power your program
So, without further ado, here are the five top employee benefits trends we see gaining momentum, that employers should consider embracing in the current benefits landscapes.
1. Personalisation and customisation
The trend: Increasing preference for personalisation and customisation reflects a shift towards tailoring benefits to individual preferences and needs. This approach provides employees with more flexibility and choice in their benefits packages, contributing to a more engaged and motivated workforce while acknowledging and addressing the unique requirements of each individual.
The tech: AI-driven platforms in particular play a crucial role in this trend by analysing employee data to offer personalised benefits. These platforms leverage advanced algorithms to understand individual preferences, ensuring that benefit packages align with the diverse needs of an organisation’s workforce.
The platform: Personalised employee benefits platforms, like FlexGenius, offer the flexibility and customisation capabilities any modern workplace needs to proactively meet the needs of its diverse employee base. When exploring platforms, consider how customisable the programs are and whether they offer a flexible range of employee benefit features.
2. Wellness and mental health programs
The trend: With the increasing focus on holistic well-being, companies are prioritising benefits like mental health support and wellness programs alongside traditional healthcare plans to foster a positive and more inclusive work environment for their employees. This shows a long overdue shift in focus considering that 1 in 4 employees is affected by low mood, anxiety and other mental conditions every year in England!
The tech: Technology plays a pivotal role in this trend, with the integration of mobile apps, telehealth platforms, and wellness portals providing accessible resources for mental health support. These digital tools not only facilitate easy access to wellness programs for employees but also enable them to engage with mental health resources conveniently, as and when they need to.
The platform: With the range of employee health benefits products available on the market, the employee benefits platforms of choice provide wide access to these options, allowing organisations to boost employee productivity through a variety of optimal health and wellness solutions. Be on the lookout for benefits like private medical insurance, dental plans, health screenings, online doctors, and health club discounts when exploring an employee benefits platform.
3. Financial well-being solutions
The trend: Amidst economic uncertainties, the emerging employee benefits trend of financial well-being solutions acknowledges the profound impact financial stress has on overall employee wellness. Employers are increasingly recognising the importance of addressing financial concerns to help enhance employee satisfaction and productivity, supporting overall financial well-being while creating a more supportive and resilient workforce.
The tech: With the integration of financial wellness apps, budgeting tools, and employer-sponsored financial education programs, technology plays a key part in driving this trend forward. These digital solutions empower employees to manage their finances more effectively, providing resources to alleviate financial stress, and promoting a healthier work-life balance overall with reduced concerns over financial security.
The platform: The best employee benefits platforms provide financial wellness solutions to ensure that employees and their families are protected from unforeseen events. Beyond pension and retirement resources, these benefits should be flexible and include offerings like income protection and critical illness cover.
4. Digital benefits administration
The trend: The employee benefits trend of digital benefits administration involves a shift towards seamless admin processes, streamlining the way organisations manage and deliver employee benefits. This trend aligns with the broader trend of digital transformation in the workplace, promoting a more agile and responsive approach to benefits administration.
The tech: Integrated HR platforms, benefits management software, and employee self-service portals are key components of this trend. These technologies contribute to increased efficiency in benefits enrollment, communication, and administration, reducing manual tasks and paperwork. The adoption of digital benefits administration not only enhances the employee experience by providing self-service options to employees but also allows HR teams to manage benefits more effectively.
The platform: To fully leverage the benefits of digital benefits administration, you need an employee benefits platform that easily integrates with all your HR tools, tapping into these solutions collectively to provide a holistic, data-driven benefits administration experience.
Optimal employee benefits platforms can support and integrate with:
- Onboarding software
- HR chatbots
- AI-driven recruitment tools
- Training on demand
- People analytics
5. Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives
The trend: The growing trend of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Initiatives reflects a heightened emphasis on creating inclusive benefits packages that cater to the diverse needs of a globally dispersed and remote workforce. Modern organisations recognise the importance of acknowledging and addressing the unique requirements of employees from various backgrounds and demographics. This signifies a strategic commitment to fostering an inclusive workplace culture where all employees feel valued and supported through comprehensive and tailored benefits packages.
The tech: Technology plays a crucial role in this trend, with the integration of analytics tools to track and assess the inclusivity of benefit offerings. These tools help organisations understand the impact of their benefits offerings on different employee groups, helping them make informed adjustments to ensure equitable access.
The platform: Platforms supporting diverse employee groups are becoming more prevalent and are integral to fostering a sense of belonging and ensuring that benefits resonate with the varied experiences and needs of a diverse workforce. As such, employee benefits platforms that offer inclusive benefits like equal parental leave, flexible working, and floating holidays are the preferred choice.
Embrace the future of employee benefits with FlexGenius
In today's rapidly evolving workplace, staying current with employee benefits trends is essential for organisations aiming to attract, retain, and satisfy their workforce. A personalised benefits package not only sets a company apart from its competitors but also contributes to a positive workplace culture that encourages increased productivity.
By taking s strategic and technologically informed approach to employee benefits, and aligning with the diverse needs and expectations of the contemporary workforce, companies can achieve new heights of growth and success. This is where the support of an intuitive and innovative employee benefits platform, like FlexGenius, comes in.
FlexGenius is a forward-looking solution for HR teams seeking to enhance their employee benefits offering and improve their ways of working, and the features and flexibility offered by the platform make managing employee benefits easier than ever.
Explore what FlexGenius can do for your organisation and consider booking a demo of the platform to see it in action. Alternatively, you can reach out to our friendly team with any questions.
*Avantus does not provide tax or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax and accounting advisors before engaging in any scheme.