Comprehensive benefits plans key to building a strong workforce

November 7, 2011    

Original Article: Employee Benefit News

By Lisa Gillespie

It’s no surprise that having a well-rounded compensation plan in place is key for employers looking to amp up their workforce. As such, offering medical insurance benefits and paid time-off is often simply not enough. The Benefits USA 2011/2012 survey results found employers are offering a myriad of benefits to keep their employees happy. Dental insurance, for example, is offered by 98.2% of employers, while vision insurance is offered by 84.5%. Information was collected from nearly 4,500 benefit plans covering over six million employees across the country.

Ninety-nine percent of survey respondents offer a retirement plan to employees. Short and long-term disability is offered by 87.5% and 94.3% of companies, respectively. Nearly 50% offer accident insurance.

Life insurance coverage is also a common offering made by companies to their employees. Nearly 98% of employers offer basic life insurance. Seventy percent use multiples of an employee’s pay to determine the maximum death benefit beneficiaries will receive. More than 43% of the companies using this method set the death benefit at one full year of an employee’s pay, while 30.5% set the benefit at two year’s pay.

“Many companies were forced to scale back their total compensation packages during the height of the recession and benefits were not spared those cutbacks,” says Amy Kaminski, director of marketing for Compdata Surveys. “Now, as companies are looking to expand their workforce again, they realize the need to offer a wide range of benefits in order to remain competitive in attracting and retaining top talent.”

Only 25.8% of employers report offering elder care benefits to employees. These benefits include flexible schedules, long-term care insurance discounts and referral services, among others. However, a study conducted in June by the MetLife Mature Market Institute found the number of adult children caring for aging parents has tripled over the last 15 years, and providing care has cost these caregivers an estimated $3 trillion in lost wages, pension and Social Security benefits. As the aging population continues to increase, it may become important for employers to evaluate their benefit packages to include this growing class of dependents.

Original Article: Employee Benefit News

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