Voluntary benefits: data-driven and personalized benefit offerings

By Higginbotham on April 22 , 2020


Offering a good salary may no longer be enough. According to a Glassdoor survey, 63 percent of job seekers and employees consider benefits to be a top factor when looking at job ads, and Benefits Pro found that 62 percent of employees under age 50 wouldn’t work for a company that doesn’t offer voluntary benefits. Clearly, to attract and retain talent, employers need to offer the benefits that employees want.   

The problem, though, is that different workers want very different benefits. With an increase in possible offerings, selecting the right supplemental benefits is both essential and complicated. A data-driven and personalized approach can help employers and employees zero in on the perfect package while keeping costs low. 

More Options Than Ever 

When it comes to benefits, there are some classic staples. Workers probably expect health and retirement benefits, along with some voluntary options that usually include life insurance and disability insurance.  

Beyond this, however, there are many more benefits designed to help employees: pet insurance, identity theft protection, dental and vision insurance, long-term care insurance and much, much more.  

Most people probably wouldn’t be interested in every single one of these benefits. Someone who doesn’t have any pets, for example, isn’t going to care about pet insurance, while someone with 20/20 vision may not want to spend money on vision insurance. When it comes to benefits, one size does not fit all.  

Instead of getting a standard benefits package, many employees would prefer to pick and choose the benefits that fit their unique needs. Meanwhile, employers don’t want to waste resources on benefits that aren’t used or appreciated. 

Personalization is the key.   

Using Data and Personalization to Improve Benefits 

A MetLife survey found that 73 percent of employees say having customized benefits would increase their loyalty to their employer, while 83 percent of workers would take a small pay cut in exchange for a better choice of benefits.  

It makes sense. Employees want benefits, but they don’t just want any benefits. They want the benefits that solve the specific problems they face. If employers offer these benefits, the employees will have plenty of reason to stay. 

The problem then becomes figuring out which benefits provide the best fit.   

Data can help here. Employers can use data on participation, claims and demographics to select the benefit offerings that are most suited to their workforce. Employee surveys and meetings may also provide key data that shines a light on what workers really want.  

With a diverse workforce, there will likely be a wide range of highly sought-after benefits. Because employees often pay for voluntary benefits in full using payroll deductions, employers can offer many options at little to no cost. Meanwhile, employees can gain access to low group rates and convenient enrollment.  

Need help with customizing your voluntary benefits offering? We're here for you. Learn more about our voluntary employee benefit services. 

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