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Employment Resources


By August 1, 2008No Comments

As an employer, you spend a significant amount of money providing your employees with an attractive benefits package. It is a necessity if you’re in a competitive industry where you need to find and retain top talent. But do your employees appreciate your investment? Do they have any idea how much you spend to provide their benefits package?

If your workplace is like most, the answer is probably no. Surveys on employee attitudes toward their benefits reveal that most vastly underestimate the amount their employers spend. Studies also show that employee attitudes toward their benefits packages tend to be negative, focusing on focusing on rising premiums and cost-sharing methods rather than employer contributions.


Generally, it’s not that employees are ungrateful; it’s that they truly don’t realize how much you pay to provide benefits. How can you tell your story so that employees appreciate their benefits? There are a number of ways to accomplish this, and it’s a worthwhile undertaking since you need a return on your considerable investment. Here are low or no-cost tips that may help:

  • Provide a total pay statement: When employees think about their compensation, they typically only consider their gross pay. However, as you know, benefits make up a large part of the full amount you pay to keep them on board. You can spell out the details in a total pay statement, which is typically a chart illustrating the value of the total compensation and breaking it down into its various parts. You can include other employee perks you offer, such as tuition reimbursement, licensure fees you pay, etc. There are companies that provide custom total pay statements, or you can use a spreadsheet application to generate them yourself.
  • Make costs a part of benefits education: Many businesses provide educational meetings about employee benefits during new-hire orientation or annual benefits enrollment. This is a perfect opportunity to emphasize the value of the benefits package and to underscore the fact that it is part of the employees’ total compensation. If your insurance carrier conducts employee training on benefits, you can ask your representative about the possibility of mentioning the total cost and the employer portion.
  • Add free or low-cost perks: You might also consider adding voluntary benefits or perks such as pet insurance, discounts on gym memberships, community service days or other incentives to help employees see the overall value of their relationship with your company. Sometimes employees focus on quantity, so having additional choices — even ones that are 100% employee paid — can result in a greater level of appreciation. Your insurance broker may have suggestions if you’re ready to explore this option.


If your employees don’t appreciate their total compensation, you can’t fully capitalize on your investment in benefits as the important motivational tool it can be. It pays to take a second look at how your employees perceive their benefits. Remember, improving their perception can be relatively inexpensive — and well worth the effort.