The key to a successful benefits plan is high employee engagement. If your workers don’t use the tools and strategies your adviser provides them, they’re unlikely to get the savings and high-quality care that your plan can offer. This can result in your business not receiving the full impact of your plan’s potential.
Even though many employers understand the importance of employee engagement, they may also make incorrect assumptions about the speed, rate, and method in which that engagement increases. These unrealistic expectations can cause business owners to become discouraged about their plan, potentially even giving up on it before it has the chance to help create savings and growth for their company.
Here are three of the biggest misconceptions that business owners have about employee engagement in their benefits plan:
High Engagement Happens Overnight
Many employers think of employee engagement as a one-and-done process. In reality, though, the tools and strategies your adviser presents will need to be shown to your employees repeatedly over time. Even when presented with a great plan that can provide substantial savings and high-quality care, your employees will need time and experience with your benefits plan to get excited enough to engage with it. From there, the excitement – and engagement – will slowly spread among your workforce. The results you’re hoping for may take longer than a year to manifest, and there’s no quick fix to speed up the process, but the ultimate impact will create a culture that encourages new and existing employees to become more involved in their benefits plan.
Anything Less Than 100% Engagement Is A Failure
In order to be successful in reaching your employee engagement goals, you first have to decide what constitutes “success” for your business. Not all of the tools your adviser provides will be useful to all of your employees, so aiming for 100 percent engagement can make you think that you’re falling behind on your engagement goals even if you’re really succeeding.
For example, if you have 150 employees and include a concierge service in your plan, all 150 of your employees are highly unlikely to use the service. Conversely, tools like telehealth services that can help employees save time and money for checkups and minor ailments are more likely to achieve higher engagement. Tools and strategies that cater to more specific situations are likely to see lower engagement rates, and you should talk with your adviser to adjust your expectations accordingly.
All The Work Has To Come From The Employer
Building an effective benefits plan that works for the company and employees is a team effort. However, the impact on employee engagement that can come from you and your adviser is relatively limited. In fact, most of the work that goes into increasing employee engagement will come organically from the workers themselves. Here’s how:
- Identify an employee who can be positively impacted by a tool. If you know an employee has a certain condition that could be helped with a tool in your plan, talk with your adviser to figure out a tool in your plan that could help them get the care they need.
- Ensure that the employee understands how the tool can help them. The better your employees understand their plan, the more likely they’ll be to implement the tools they need. Your adviser can meet with your affected employee one-on-one to educate them and help them better understand their plan and the tools within it.
- Encourage the employee to be an internal champion. Word of mouth is a powerful way to build employee engagement, and if a worker is happy with how a tool or strategy helped them, they’ll be more likely to tell their coworkers about it. Encouraging your employees to spread the good news about how a tool improved their quality of life can work wonders in getting your other employees on board as well.
The story of a great benefits plan is interesting when it comes from an employer or adviser, but it’s far more compelling when passed from employee to employee. Letting your own workers be the ones to sing the praises of your benefits plan can be the most effective way to boost employee engagement over time.
A Slow, But Valuable Process
Increasing your employee engagement isn’t as easy as snapping your fingers, but it will pay off over time. By working with your adviser to manage your expectations about how fast and how much you should expect your workers to increase their engagement with the tools in your plan, you can build a plan that your employees want to be involved in. As the word spreads, so will engagement, and before you know it, you’ll have a benefits plan that your entire workforce can get behind.
Contact us today to learn more about how to get your employees excited about their new and improved benefits plan.