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“By using employees’ ideas to actually create [their] benefits strategy, [employers] will be in a better place because they are designing a scheme in a way that’s going to work for that particular audience, and that [employees] actually want to embrace,” he says.
Like Minds’ Throp adds: “Employers are still loath to embrace social media because there are still fears about control and whether it is a suitable medium for broadcasting information.
“Some personalities, such as extroverts, like the variety provided by unpredictable communications, such as an email dropping in, as it offers variety to their work, whereas worriers, especially if currently under stress, will ignore such an intrusion.” Employers that are content to blame their lack of effort in ascertaining their employees’ needs, whether in relation to benefits or communication, on the economic downturn and their stretched resources, even if true, will find employees hard to convince.
Bacon says: “The cost of listening [to employees] and funding are two major hurdles [to meeting employees’ benefits needs].
A forthcoming white paper based on a survey of more than 2,500 employees and focus groups with various employers, conducted by You Gov for Barclays, has found that employers’ failure to meet the benefits needs of particular groups of staff is particularly acute among generations X and Y.
This is despite the fact that these generations are future business leaders and are particularly responsive to workplace benefits.
According to the report, this is adversely affecting employee wellbeing and causing engagement issues.
Difficult discussions But discussions with employees, even the most financially astute ones, about benefits such as pensions are tough.