In a time of intense competition for talent, the role of health and wellbeing benefits in organisational recruitment and retention has come to the forefront. A recent study conducted by Towergate Health & Protection sheds light on the significance of these benefits in retaining and attracting employees.

According to the Towergate Health & Protection study, 66% of employers acknowledge the pivotal role health and wellbeing support plays in their ability to recruit and retain top talent. In a highly competitive job market, 37% of respondents revealed that their support for employee health and wellbeing is a key reason for staff retention, while 28% identified it as a determining factor for attracting new talent.

Debra Clark, Head of Wellbeing at Towergate Health & Protection, emphasised the value of targeted health and wellbeing support, stating:

Offering support targeted at particular groups ensures employers and employees make the most of the available options. Forward-thinking employers recognise how this can support their recruitment and retention strategy.

Debra Clark, Head of Wellbeing at Towergate Health & Protection

Furthermore, the research discovered that 29% of employers use specific health and wellbeing support to attract and retain particular demographic groups, demonstrating the adaptability and effectiveness of these programs.

However, there is a significant knowledge gap among employees when it comes to understanding the health and wellbeing benefits offered by their organisations, as highlighted by research from GRiD. Only 21% of employees reported having a very good understanding of all the health and wellbeing benefits available to them.

Interestingly, the employers’ perspective on employee understanding differs significantly from reality, with 57% of employers believing their staff fully comprehend the benefits they provide. This gap in perception suggests a need for improved communication.

Katharine Moxham, spokesperson for GRiD, addressed this issue, stating:

There is a clear disconnect between how well employees understand their benefits in practice and what employers believe. The answer probably lies in communication: good communication is likely to lead to better awareness, understanding, and engagement.

Katharine Moxham, spokesperson for GRiD

The study also revealed that 27% of employers increased communication about their benefits over the past year. In contrast, only 16% of employees noticed a noticeable increase in communication from their employers, indicating the need for more effective and engaging communication strategies.

To enhance awareness and understanding, employers should explore various communication methods. While email (39%) is the most popular communication channel, other methods such as staff welcome packs (31%), staff handbooks (28%), and promotional fairs or drop-in sessions (12%) can be highly effective in increasing engagement.

Katharine Moxham added,

Creating a buzz around the support available means staff will be much more aware of what is on offer and allows staff to get a deeper understanding, really value the benefits they receive and engage with them. Judging by our research, this would merit greater consideration by employers.

The combined research from Towergate Health & Protection and GRiD reflects the importance of health and wellbeing benefits in organisational recruitment and retention. Employers need to bridge the knowledge gap by implementing effective communication strategies to ensure employees fully understand and appreciate the benefits offered, ultimately leading to increased retention and attraction of top talent.

Editor at Workplace Wellbeing Professional | Website | + posts

Joanne is the editor for Workplace Wellbeing Professional and has a keen interest in promoting the safety and wellbeing of the global workforce. After earning a bachelor's degree in English literature and media studies, she taught English in China and Vietnam for two years. Before joining Work Well Pro, Joanne worked as a marketing coordinator for luxury property, where her responsibilities included blog writing, photography, and video creation.