On the face of it, all benefits providers can look pretty much the same. Of course, this isn’t true (otherwise we would all be in trouble), but companies need to make sure that they don’t lose sight of what they want to achieve when working with a provider.
It’s all too easy to fall into the trap of doing things the same way that you’ve always done them or copying what every other company does. But you need providers who are aligned to how you operate and work with you to ensure that they avoid a cookie cutter benefits programme – just because one programme works for others, doesn’t mean that it will work for you.
You need to keep the provider on their toes, share your ideas, stay true to your company values and make sure this is communicated at every step of the process. Only through this sustained engagement can you ensure buy in from every member of staff.
Here are three ways to make your benefits provider work for you.
1 Don’t let them tell you what you need
You know your staff better than anyone. You know what motivates them, what benefits they would hate to see go, and those that they wouldn’t miss. Providers do so much more than discounts or a platform – the world of benefits is constantly evolving, and you need to explore the full spectrum of options to see what works best for you.
Your provider can share what they’ve seen work well for other companies in your sector but you know what benefits your staff will use – and if you don’t think they will be interested, let your provider know. If you are unsure, the solution is simple. The best way to understand what benefits would work for your staff is to ask them.
It doesn’t end with the types of benefits your provider can offer. If you have existing benefits that you don’t want to lose then ask your provider to incorporate these into your benefits platform.
If you are struggling to boost participation and some of your staff are notorious for spending time on their mobiles, ask your provider to develop a native benefits app so you they can access your employee benefits anytime, anywhere.
Pay careful attention to these insights and act upon them, and you will ensure that you are doing all you can to design a benefits programme with the needs of each employee at its heart.
2 Let your true colours shine through
Keeping your benefits aligned to your brand, values and even tone of voice is imperative to ensure successful take up. When looking for a provider, you need to make sure they can offer you what you want.
If details such as pantone colours right down to your Employer Value Proposition (EVP) aren’t considered properly then staff are less likely to be impressed and take notice. So, don’t let your provider tell you what you need, tell them what you know your staff want.
From creating pre-launch campaigns and promotional posters for each of your sites, to running ongoing campaigns and face-to-face launches to maintain employee engagement and boost employee adoption, it is imperative that all aspects of your programme reflect your brand.
Instead of posters from a third party that your staff have never heard of, your unique identity should permeate every facet of your benefits programme and it should look bespoke to you.
3 Chase down the numbers
The devil is in the detail when it comes to measuring the success of your benefits programme. Make sure you can access the data readily to see which benefits are resonating with your employees.
If your provider can’t show you the most popular area of your benefits platform or the reasons why people are calling the EAP, you won’t be able to create a targeted communications plan to support your benefits roll out and promotions. It is essential that your provider visits you regularly to update you on the latest benefits that have hit the scene to see if you can improve your programmes further.
These are only a couple of ways to make your benefits provider work for you, but they are essential steps for businesses committed to employee engagement and who want to create a meaningful benefits programme.
Providers possess important expertise and putting together benefits programmes is their bread and butter, but it’s only through continuous engagement with you, and with the input of your identity and your unique understanding of your employees, that providers can help create a programme that works for you.
By working with a forward-thinking benefits provider, you should be able to implement a long-standing programme that is tailor-made to keep staff engaged.