A pension scheme and free tea are amongst the most popular benefits offered to employees, new survey findings have revealed.
According to the latest ‘Reward management’ report from the CIPD and LCP the top ten workplace benefits enjoyed by staff also include training, childcare vouchers and paid leave for bereavement.
10 most popular workplace benefits
- Pension scheme – trust or contract-based
- Paid leave for bereavement
- Training and career development
- Childcare vouchers
- Occupational sick pay
- Employee assistance programme
- Christmas party and/or lunch
- Free tea and coffee
- 25 days or more paid leave for full-time employees
- Paid leave for jury service
The report found that nearly all employers – 97% – were planning to maintain or increase their spend on employee benefits over the next two years.
It said that 8 in 10 employers intend to spend the same amount on employee benefits as they currently do, while 16% plan to increase their investment.
Nearly half of employers – 43% – said they were more likely to increase investment in professional development which includes training, paid study leave and professional subscriptions. Health and wellbeing would be the focus of 29% covering occupational sick pay, employee assistance programmes and flu jabs.
A quarter are looking to spend more on financial benefits such as pension schemes, loans to help staff in financial hardship and free debt advice.
One in six employers expect to invest in a formal work-life balance policy within the next year, which can include flexible working and shared parental leave. The research found that when there are a higher number of women in management positions an organisation is more likely to already have a formal work-life balance policy in place.
“Despite the recent economic and political uncertainty, employers are committed to investing in their employees and their future,” said Charles Cotton, senior reward and performance adviser at the CIPD.
“It’s encouraging to see the benefits that have been earmarked for further spend in the near future relate to people development and well-being. Spending in these areas can help to improve employee, and ultimately, corporate performance,
However, the report warned that any extra investment in benefits risks being undermined by the lack of analysis employers carry out. The majority of respondents – 74% – said they don’t currently conduct a review of their benefit spend, so could be missing the opportunity to establish how effective their benefits are.
This is despite benefits playing an important role in helping organisations succeed, with two-thirds of respondents saying their main purpose was to attract, recruit and retain staff to support current business needs.
It also found that 16% of employers do not always communicate what benefits are on offer.
Dipa Mistry Kandola, head of flexible benefits services at LCP, commented: “Organisations could be wasting significant costs if their people don’t know about the range of benefits on offer, or are put off utilising them if they’re not easily accessible.”
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