Business Leader was amongst the attendees at Aon Plc’s Benefits and Trends event, held at its Bristol HQ.
The event was hosted by Martin Parish – who heads up Aon’s Employee Benefits team – and followed a major survey it conducted, where it asked business leaders across multiple sectors how they are responding to issues around pension provision, financial education, health and wellbeing.
The survey is in its eighth year and is seen as a key bellwether for how organisations are implementing benefits provision in the UK.
The event kicked off with Martin discussing benefits communications and said: “With four generations of people now working in many offices how you communicate with each demographic about their benefits will be very different. A sniper focused approach – using the most viable channel for each age group is seen as the best way.”
Regarding pension provision, the findings were illuminating with one statistics revealing that you would need to pay 15-20% of your salary for forty years in order to achieve 50% of your final salary pension – highlighting the need for many employees and leaders to tackle issue now.
Martin also said he had seen a trend of many companies diverting required auto-enrolment contributions away from pay-rises for employees.
The percent at which businesses match an employee contribution was also mentioned, with 8% (employer) seen as a good marker if a 5% is contributed by the employee.
More and more businesses are increasingly investing in their health and wellbeing programmes and the survey findings revealed that 68% of employers have noticed an increase in mental health related illness amongst the workforce.
To tackle this, 25% of those surveyed said that they had increased funding around health and wellbeing programmes since 2016.
In regards to how companies are communicating with employees around health and wellbeing, email communications (64.96%) was the most common method – again raising the questions about what is the correct medium to reach every demographic in the business.
Business Leader Comments
Clearly more still needs to be done around health and wellbeing but the event shows that it’s on the agenda and being discussed, with many businesses putting it at the forefront of how they operate (such as Heat Recruitment).
Financial education is also key – with it easy to see how giving information to staff about what pension provisions and financial incentives are available on the market, help to enhance employee engagement.
The issue around how different age groups respond to different marketing channels was also discussed, and it’s clear that a one-size fits all approach to employee engagement is the past, rather than the future.