The Link Between Employee Benefits and Employee Engagement

Every modern, successful company appreciates the importance of highly engaged employees. Think of tech giants like Google. Whenever you talk to Google employees they rave about their working conditions – free food, outdoor spaces to work, flexibility, casual attire, work conferences and social gatherings. Every video you see posted by a Google employee makes you want to work there! 


The undeniable truth is that employees who enjoy being at their workplace and feel spoiled with their employee benefits will stay with a company for longer, be more productive and become a brand ambassador. Even more importantly, organisations with high employee engagement experience greater profitability.  


So, do employee benefits increase employee engagement? Paytime is about to find out. 

How have employee benefits changed?

Gone are the days of offering superannuation and annual leave as employee benefits. Now, this is a government implemented standard across all industries. Nowadays, employees want workplace flexibility, health and wellness programs, discounts and autonomy. And, they want it so much that they’ll choose a company who offers it even if a competing company is offering a higher salary.  


With a newly found understanding of the importance of employee wellbeing for the health and profitability of an organisation, HR and employers have refocused to place an astronomical importance on offering a comprehensive employee benefits package that meets their physical, financial and mental needs.  


By offering mentoring sessions, on-site counsellors, mental health days, discounted gym memberships, financial tools such as earned wage access and free snacks, employees feel valued and looked after. In return, they’ll work harder to reciprocate the feeling through meeting their KPIs and are more engaged in their work, often resulting in longer hours worked and better output.   

But how does employee benefits affect employee engagement?

Countless sources have made a strong connection between employee benefits and employee engagement. Employee engagement is defined as “a human resources (HR) concept that describes the level of enthusiasm and dedication a worker feels toward their job.” Enthusiasm can only be achieved when an employee is in a positive state of mind. Similary, dedication or loyalty can only be achieved if the employee feels valued and content in their position. Therefore, employers must execute strategies that ensure employees feel valued and content within their current role and company, which thus results in them feeling enthusiastic and dedicated. This strategy is usually an employee perk package. 


To further strengthen the connection between employee engagement and employee perks, in Benify’s survey of 19,000 employees and HR leaders, they found there was an overwhelming connection between employee engagement and employee retention.


Their study revealed:


  • Employees who are most satisfied with their total benefits offer estimate their own level of engagement 11.5% higher than the average,  
  • Employees who are most satisfied with their total benefits offer estimate their own level of engagement 25.3% higher than those who are least satisfied, and; 
  • The number of employees who consider themselves as brand ambassadors is 21.5% higher amongst employees who are satisfied with their benefits package.


In addition, in SHRM’s 2018 survey, 92% of employees indicated that benefits are important to their overall job satisfaction.

So, what should you do to ensure employee engagement? 

Every employee benefit package will differ. Dependent on the company size, values and industry. Here’s a basic list of the must-haves! 


Flexible Work Options:

Flexible work arrangements has become a must, particularly over the last two years. Offering remote work, flexible hours, or compressed workweeks as employee benefits significantly improves employee engagement. The offered flexibility permits employees to better manage personal and professional responsibilities, resulting in increased work-life balance and thus, job satisfaction. What does job satisfaction lead to? Enthusiasm, dedication and engagement. 

Career Development and Training:

Employees value opportunities for growth and development. In order to retain top talent and assist them with their up-skilling, we suggest providing training programs, workshops and seminars. Or, it could be subsidising professional certifications or tuition. Supporting your employees in their career growth demonstrates a commitment to their long term success but also benefits the company – now the one employee has multiple useful skills! 


Health and Wellness Programs:

Investing in employee health and wellness initiatives demonstrates a commitment to their well-being and encourages a positive state of mind. This may be executed by covering comprehensive health insurance, such as medical and dental plans. Or, wellness programs that promote physical fitness, such as gym memberships, pilates classes, etc. Additionally, you should include a benefit that is specifically for mental-wellbeing, perhaps a workplace counsellor or mentoring program. 


Financial Benefits:

Financial well-being is a significant concern for many individuals – individuals who, from 9am-5pm, are also employees. Offering average or slightly above average compensation packages is not enough to ensure financial wellbeing. In addition to base pay, commission and/or bonus’ and superannuation, an organisation who values their employees and appreciates the impact of financial stress on productivity will offer access to financial tools.  An example of this is providing employees with a better cash flow through implementing Earned Wage Access (EWA). Employers may also provide services that assist with budget planning. 


To learn more about employee engagement, employee retention, and Earned Wage Access, click here