A recent study by the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America reveals how Americans perceive and value their employee benefits. The report, the third annual Guardian Workplace Benefits Study, uncovers a significant disconnect between employers and employees when it comes to benefits offered in the workplace.
According to the report, nearly two in three workers strongly believe that employers have a responsibility to offer insurance and retirement benefits. In stark contrast, only 16 percent of employers strongly believe they are responsible for providing benefits. Yet, employers acknowledge that workplace benefits do play a role in helping employees and their families achieve financial security.
The report also unveils that 42 percent of employees surveyed get most or almost all of their insurance products through the workplace, while 68 percent rely on their benefits for at least half of their financial preparedness. Even when employers offer these benefits, many workers do not take advantage because of poor decision-making, ineffective communication or education efforts, Guardian says. Employers can improve enrollment and the perceived value of these benefits by increasing communication and transparency.
The study presents findings from two online surveys conducted in the fall of 2014 among 1,001 benefits decision-makers (“Employers”) and another among 1,706 benefits plan participants (“Employees”) age 22 or older, who work full-time for a U.S. company with at least five employees.