With COVID-19 not seeming to cease, 2021 also looks like being cast with the 2020 shadow of uncertainty. The pandemic has introduced many significant challenges to employers and has been a major reason for everyday employee stress. With 2021 close around, employers must start planning the best-suited employee benefits packages to ensure employee work-life balance, better workplace wellbeing, and overall less stress for employees and employers.
A Mercer study had reported that healthcare costs might increase by 4.4% in 2021. Owing to the ambiguity, employers must consider the emerging trends of employee benefits and perks to ensure they offer the services that employees will value.
Studies reveal the most common employee benefits and perks employers must offer in 2021.
Novelty Healthcare Plans
The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) has reported a 54% increase in health insurance premiums in the last decade. Also, 71% of the hardship has been borne by the employees. Currently, the situation has escalated to a point where experts reveal a 5.3% rise in healthcare costs by 2021. Unfortunately, both employees and employers cannot afford expensive premiums. To overcome these concerns, employers must look into innovative and beneficial healthcare plans that allow better management of rising healthcare costs. Employers can also offer corporate wellness programs that can improve employee health and wellbeing, which reflect in lower healthcare costs. Also, seeking a healthcare plan directly from a credible provider can reduce the costs, while guiding the employees to make better decisions.
Financial Wellness Programs
The current pandemic has affected the global economy, forcing many employers to fire their workers. The sudden job loss or a loss of income has affected many employees financially, thus causing a lot of mental stress. A recent PwC survey showed that 54% of employees were stressed due to their finances. Almost 33% of the full-time employees, mostly belonging to the millennials, Gen X, and Baby Boomer generations saved less than $1000 to meet unexpected expenses. Employers must offer financial wellness programs through which financial consultants can help employees gain more knowledge to make the right decisions about their financial future and investments. Employers can also gamify corporate wellness programs by allowing employees to earn points that can be redeemed as rewards and incentives.
Telemedicine And Digital Health Solutions
With COVID-19 enforcing remote working and social distancing, attending the healthcare hospital has become a risky affair. Employers are looking to implement telemedicine and digital health solutions to ensure quick and quality healthcare to the employees. The telemedicine solutions can be leveraged with the latest digital technology to receive quality healthcare services for illnesses on time. Also, these digital healthcare solutions can help in providing the right healthcare access to people in rural locations.
Mental Health Programs
Studies show that 54% of American employees are at a higher risk of acquiring depression and mental stress during the COVID, compared to the pre-COVID period. Since mental health issues affect employee wellbeing and holistic health, along with organizational productivity, employers are now looking to offer mental health programs that can help employees deal with their emotional wellbeing. Offer Employee Assistance Programs, or tailored corporate wellness programs that offer suitable tools and resources can also help in managing behavioral health.
In addition to corporate wellness programs and other monetary and medical benefits, employees expect many more workplace benefits and perks. Right from flexible working hours, paid leaves, maternity and paternity leaves, leadership and career coaching, and more. Employers can seek employee feedback to know what are the benefits and perks required by the workforce, and look for innovative ways to cater to their needs.
Employee benefits and services have undergone a major transformational change, and employee expectations have changed. What was considered a beneficial package 10 years ago may not be of much value to the employees today. And so, employers must keep in mind employee benefits demands and look for innovative ways to ensure their benefits package stands out in the market.
2021 is supposedly going to be a transformational year for the employee benefits and perks packages as they continue to evolve with time and trends. And so, to ensure a good employee value proposition (EVP) to the company and provide quality virtual healthcare to the employees, employers must offer suitable workplace benefits and perks.