U.S. employees are not strongly invested in their benefits, and 63% of companies agree that workers need to be more engaged, finds a new Aflac survey. In addition, only half feel their employees take full advantage of the benefits offered. Regardless of whether it’s a failing in communication or actual offerings, 54% of employees would transition jobs for better benefits, despite lower pay.

Lack of communication may play a large role. Only 40% of employees feel extremely or very informed about their benefits. For instance, most employees report that their employers communicate less than three times a year about benefits, with 24% doing so more than three times a year. In fact, 44% of employees claim they receive too little communication about benefits from their employer.

Considering the fact that 53% of workers say they are planning to seek other employment in the next 12 months, employers could certainly drum up the discussion around benefits. After all, 41% of workers agree they would be less likely to leave their jobs if they were well-informed about their benefits.

To help combat a mass exodus, employers could take steps to better present their employee benefits offerings. One such tool Aflac suggests is to survey employees. Despite electronic communications that make it easier than ever to ask for workers’ input at a minimal cost, only 52% of organizations conduct surveys that enhance their understanding of employees’ satisfaction with benefit offerings. Even fewer (43%) survey their employees’ understanding of benefits communication.

One commonly missed opportunity is providing voluntary benefits, insurance offerings that 59% of employees say they would be interested in applying for if presented with the option.

Another important tactic is to communicate year-round. Expecting employees to absorb large quantities of information once or twice a year is unreasonable and may cost employers valuable talent.

Ultimately, communication around benefits is imperative as benefits packages can impact employee loyalty (86%), productivity (81%), job satisfaction (89%) and retention (77%). Employers should keep in mind the power of their benefits when asking employees about their needs and wants and instituting a robust communications effort.

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