2015 Strategic Benefits—Leveraging Benefits to Retain Employees

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SHRM Survey Findings:

October 15, 2015SHRM Survey Findings: 2015 Strategic BenefitsLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees

2IntroductionThe 2015 Strategic Benefits Survey is part of a survey series administered annually since 2012 by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). This research is used to determine whether various employee benefits are leveraged to recruit and retain top talent. The six-part series features the following topics:Part 1: Wellness InitiativesPart 2: Flexible Work Arrangements Part 3: Health CarePart 4: Leveraging Benefits to Retain EmployeesPart 5: Leveraging Benefits to Recruit EmployeesPart 6: Assessment and Communication of BenefitsDefinitionsFor the purpose of this survey, a high-performing employee was defined as any employee ranked among the top 10% in an organizations last performance review; a highly skilled employee was defined as any employee with skills that are critical to the short- and long-term success of his or her operating unit or organization.

2015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees SHRM 2015Introduction and Definitions

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Employees at All Levels of the OrganizationDifficulty retaining employees at all levels: More than one-third (36%) of HR professionals indicated their organizations had difficulty retaining employees at all levels of the organization in the past 12 months, a statistically significant increase from 2013 (26%) and 2012 (25%).Leveraging benefits to retain employees at all levels of the organization: One-third (33%) of HR professionals indicated their organizations leveraged their benefits program to retain employees at all levels of the organization in the past 12 months, a statistically significant increase from 2013 (18%) and 2012 (20%).Benefits leveraged to retain employees at all levels of the organization: Four-fifths of respondents reported their organizations leveraged health care benefits to retain employees at all levels of the organization; more than one-half reported the same for retirement savings and planning benefits (57%), and slightly fewer for leave (47%) and financial and compensation (46%) benefits.

3Key Findings2015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees SHRM 2015

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High-Performing EmployeesDifficulty retaining high-performing employees: Thirty percent of respondents indicated their organizations had difficulty retaining high-performing employees in the past 12 months.Leveraging benefits to retain high-performing employees: One-third (33%) of respondents indicated their organizations leveraged their benefits program to retain high-performing employees in the past 12 months, a statistically significant increase from 2013 (19%) and 2012 (20%).Benefits leveraged to retain high-performing employees: More than two-thirds (71%) of respondents indicated their organizations leveraged health care benefits to retain high-performing employees in the past 12 months; about one-half indicated their organizations leveraged retirement savings and planning (51%) and financial and compensation (49%) benefits. Fewer respondents indicated their organizations positively leveraged flexible working benefits in the past 12 months (29%) compared with 2013 (57%) and 2012 (48%).

4Key Findings (continued)2015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees SHRM 2015

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Highly Skilled EmployeesDifficulty retaining highly skilled employees: About one-third (35%) of respondents indicated their organizations had difficulty retaining highly skilled employees in the past 12 months.Leveraging benefits to retain highly skilled employees: One-third (33%) of respondents indicated their organizations leveraged their benefits program to retain highly skilled employees in the past 12 months, a statistically significant increase from 2013 (20%) and 2012 (19%).Benefits leveraged to retain highly skilled employees: About three-quarters (73%) of respondents reported their organizations leveraged health care benefits to retain highly skilled employees. About one-half indicated their organizations leveraged financial and compensation (52%) and retirement savings and planning (51%) benefits. About one-third (34%) of respondents indicated their organizations leveraged flexible working benefits, a statistically significant decrease from 2013 (55%).

5Key Findings (continued)2015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees SHRM 2015

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6What Do These Findings Mean for the HR Profession?2015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Recruit Employees SHRM 2015More than one-third of HR professionals reported having difficulty retaining employees at all levels of their organizations. In this period of limited wage growth, it is frequently not an option to offer higher salaries as a means of retaining top talent. Knowing this, the use of benefits as a retention strategy should be considered by HR professionals who are struggling to retain employees.Fewer HR professionals said their organizations leveraged flexible work arrangements (FWAs) in 2015 as a retention strategy for high-performing employees, compared with previous years. However, FWAs should not be dismissed as a means of retaining workers. These benefits have proven to be highly valued among two sizable demographic groupsMillennials and workers age 55 and older. Millennials have shown an increased preference for having greater control over their own schedules, and many place greater emphasis on organizational culture, rather than on compensation-related aspects of a job. The 55-and-older segment is frequently relied on for filling highly skilled positions, and these employees often need flexibility in scheduling, whether to care for family members or to conduct a phased retirement from the workplace, among other reasons.When choosing which benefits to leverage for retention, HR professionals should first point to health care, and retirement savings and planning benefits. These offerings are cited most often by HR professionals in retentions strategies, undoubtedly due to the increasing cost of health care and the fact that extensive research has shown that many workers are not confident that they will have adequate financial resources when they reach retirement age.

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2015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees SHRM 20157Key FindingsLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees

8What do these findings mean for the HR profession?2015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees SHRM 2015Comparison of Difficulty Retaining and Leveraging of Benefits to Retain Employees at All Levels of the Organization in the Past 12 Months1, 21, 2Note: Response options provided were yes/no/not sure. Respondents who indicated they were not sure were excluded from this analysis. Only yes responses are shown. 1Statistically significant difference from 2013. 2Statistically significant difference from 2012.

Organizations That Leveraged Their Benefits Program to Retain Employees at All Levels of the Organization in the Past 12 MonthsOrganizations That Reported Difficulty Retaining Employees at All Levels of the Organization in the Past 12 Months

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9What do these findings mean for the HR profession?Benefits Positively Leveraged to Retain Employees at All Levels of the Organization2015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees SHRM 2015Note: Respondents whose organizations leveraged their benefits to retain employees at all levels of the organization were asked this question. Respondents who answered not sure were excluded from this analysis.*New item on the Strategic Benefits Survey.

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Preventive health and wellness benefits10What do these findings mean for the HR profession?Change in Importance of Benefits in the Next Three to Five Years to Retain Employees at All Levels of the Organization2015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees SHRM 2015Housing and relocation benefitsLeave benefitsFamily-friendly benefitsProfessional and career development benefitsFlexible working benefitsHealth care benefitsRetirement savings and planning benefitsFinancial and compensation benefits*Note: 2015 n = 77-98; 2014 n = 46-72; 2013 n = 44-58. Respondents whose organizations leveraged their benefits to retain employees at all levels of the organization were asked this question. Respondents who answered not sure were excluded from this analysis. Percentages may not total 100% due to rounding. 1Statistically significant difference from 2014. 2Statistically significant difference from 2013. *New item on the Strategic Benefits Survey.

1,21,2

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112015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees SHRM 2015Comparison of Difficulty Retaining and Leveraging of Benefits to Retain High-Performing Employees in the Past 12 MonthsNote: Response options provided were yes/no/not sure. Respondents who indicated they were not sure were excluded from this analysis. Only yes responses are shown. 1Statistically significant difference from 2013. 2Statistically significant difference from 2012.

1, 2Organizations That Leveraged Their Benefits Program to Retain High-Performing Employees in the Past 12 MonthsOrganizations That Reported Difficulty Retaining High-Performing Employees in the Past 12 Months

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12What do these findings mean for the HR profession?Benefits Positively Leveraged to Retain High-Performing Employees2015 Strategic Benefits SurveyLeveraging Benefits to Retain Employees SHRM 20151, 2Note: Respondents whose organizations leveraged their benefits to retain high-performing employees were asked this question. Respondents who answered not sure were excluded from this analysis.*New item on the Strategic Benefits Survey. 1Statistically signific

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