OpinionMay 25 2021

Employers need to tell staff about their benefits

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Employers need to tell staff about their benefits
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Advertising or highlighting those services offered, such as telephone helplines, apps or online support, can be a huge help. And having them readily available at the time when they most need it, is often what will make the difference. 

The last thing employees need to be doing in their time of need is struggling to find contact details. 

Listen to employees

Staying engaged with employees and communicating with them in a way that suits their evolving needs is another way for employers to show they are listening and responding. A large part of this is knowing or discovering what matters most to your employees.

Our recent Re:Me research into the changing dynamic between employees and employers showed some of the steps employers are taking in response to this change. 

Two-thirds (67 per cent) of the employers we spoke to indicated that they were evolving their current benefit packages to support employee’s needs. And, encouragingly, almost the same number (64 per cent) have been "promoting benefits more during and since the pandemic".

This suggests again a responsive and empathetic ear from employers. There is of course an ongoing opportunity for employers to continue building engagement with their employees and rebuild some of that connection the remote working removes. 

Ultimately, those employers who strive for regular, more proactive communication with their teams are the ones who will foster better engagement levels and are the ones most likely to retain talent as and when we start to emerge from this crisis.

Employers need to create an environment where people can speak up. If employees feel safe and able to share their views, employers will be able to identify the risks and devise strategies to better manage any issues. Businesses need to learn how to start conversations in an open and transparent way, particularly during this uncertain time and follow through with their actions. 

Where we work and the way in which we work has been changed, and the world of work as we once knew it may never return; hybrid working looks set to stay.

But with the new norm comes exciting opportunities. There is a chance for employers to act now and re-establish the connection with their staff. And in doing so they can build loyalty and trust.

In the longer term, this will build a more mutually beneficial relationship between employees and employers.

Adrian Matthews is employee benefits director at MetLife UK