This employee retention consultant has noticed that particularly in the area of communication on employee benefits to employees. In many cases, HR Leaders know it! I got a call recently from an organization that asked me to help them develop a communication plan for their benefits so their benefits would have a greater impact on employee retention. As I got into it, it was apparent they had very good benefits, but their people didn’t feel that was the case.
As I examined their communication process, it became apparent HR had turned over benefits, so they are essentially all “self-service.” Having seen the trend toward “self-service” years ago, I have always said, ”self-service” is “no-service.” Nobody is providing service at all. Employees are doing all the work themselves through a portal. I don’t consider that service! More importantly, there is no one to guide people through what is a very complex issue.
The experience of this employee recruitment expert is we need to show examples of the impact of benefits on employees, we need to be there when they have questions or guide them to someone that can get them answers. Essentially, we need to start talking to our employees about benefits again. In many cases, employees are having to navigate the system on their own. The result: People get frustrated, angry and then they see their benefits as a pain in the rump and not really a benefit.
Most people don’t have any idea what their benefits cost anymore even with “Employee Benefit Statements.” They are either written poorly, hard to interpret or not communicated to employees. For example, in one organization where I worked as an HR Leader, we had employee benefit meetings to actually explain the employee benefits so people understood them and could ask questions. We talked to our people!
There are many ways to communicate. What needs to happen in this day of complex benefits is we need to gravitate back to using real, in-person communication. This communication, combined with technology resources such as portals, videos, etc. provides the opportunity to wed technology and personal communication to truly optimize communication of our benefits so benefits become a retention tool and not a liability!
Remember…Give Your Employees C.R.A.P.® (Caring, Respect, Appreciation, and Praise) Why? Because C.R.A.P. Works!