Benefits teams are struggling with a number of often-conflicting priorities. Not only do they need to provide a wide range of benefits to meet individual’s needs, but they also need to keep costs low all while working in increasingly smaller teams. More and more organizations are turning to global benefits tech to meet these challenges. In fact, in the last year alone there has been a 9% increase in the number of organizations using benefits tech globally to automate processes, provide the data they need to identify cost savings as well as enable improvements in the way benefits are designed and delivered.

Here are just three ways that global benefits technology can help you balance your benefits priorities and meet your business objectives.

Attracting and retaining talent

Attracting and retaining talent is a top objective for four in five (82%) global benefits professionals, a significant increase on 2017’s figure of 65%. However, this priority is matched by a drive to automate administration processes and gain tighter control of global costs. Business leaders are placing greater scrutiny on benefits spend, looking to ensure this substantial investment (often second only to salary) is generating real return. Yet benefits are a key driver of employee engagement. Our global research found that 11% of organizations managing their benefits globally won talent directly from a competitor and a survey by Randstad US found that more than half (55%) of employees had left their jobs to work for another organization offering a more attractive benefits package. [1] Today’s workforce don’t want to be another number; they want to feel listened to, understood and cared for by their employer. Delivering a personalized benefits scheme, which is able to accommodate an individual’s needs and life goals, is instrumental in achieving this.

What organizations risk by trying to keep benefits costs down, is removing a key driver for employee engagement and retention. It’s about working smarter; reducing the administration burden on benefits and reward teams to allow them to be more strategic, and using data and analytics to identify cost savings in your existing scheme, including areas where easy efficiencies can be made.

Data and analytics to power moments that matter

Analyst Josh Bersin recently described people analytics as “the lynchpin of success for HR”.[2] Providing a personalized benefits scheme is one thing, but it must be delivered and communicated effectively in order to be successful. To do this, a complete and accurate view of global employee data is essential, as well as access to the right tools to be able to act upon it. Data analytics is helping HR bridge this gap, furnishing teams with insight into the cost and success rate of everything from individual recruitment ads to engagement initiatives or training programmes. This gives them the ability to stay agile, changing their strategy as needed to maintain the best outcomes for their employees. When organizations make the most of their benefits data, measuring take up levels and satisfaction, 46% report an increase in employee engagement scores.

Data analytics allows organizations to personalize their scheme to the nth degree, identifying opportunities to support their employees’ at every life stage. Currently, just 7% of organizations communicate with employees on life changes such as marriage, the birth or adoption of a child, or returning from illness, meaning that most global employers are missing out on the opportunity to be there for employees in these moments that matter. Employers who are doing this are twice as likely to meet their benefits program objectives. 

Reducing admin to provide a truly consumer-grade experience

Business leaders remain too focused on operational elements, and therefore HR professionals are unable to focus on the data analysis needed to provide truly tailored schemes. Our Global Employee Benefits Watch report found that just 10% of employers have implemented HCM software across all countries, and just 4% have rolled out benefits management software in all locations. Those that have spend 88% less time on benefits administration and see a 70% reduction in admin errors.

Our report also revealed that approximately a third of global employers offer employees access to their benefits from their mobile device, giving employees the on-demand experience that many take for granted in their personal lives. Don't underestimate the impact of anywhere, anytime access. Over a third of organizations that have implemented mobile access have employee engagement scores over 80%.

To keep up with the demands place on their role, HR and reward leaders must leverage global technology – underpinned by strong data analytics – to ensure they are providing individualized benefits to help them attract and retain the best talent. The gains to be had are clear – when using global benefits tech, 37% of organizations see a positive impact on employees’ wellbeing, 99% report an increase in operational efficiency and 60% report a positive impact on profit and loss. With the right support in place, benefits professionals can balance their objectives with those of the