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As Covid-19 restrictions continue to lift across Australia and people continue to return to the office (albeit tentatively), there has been a definite shift in attitude and how employees view their relationship to work. Supportive work cultures, flexible work arrangements and an intrinsic alignment of work and personal values are of key importance to employees, and it falls to employers to ensure they provide these intangible aspects of total reward if they are to retain and attract talent. Australian employers face a rocky road ahead, with many likely to fall prey to the US trend, coined the ‘Great Resignation’ where they do not meet employee expectations.

This presents a fresh challenge for business owners who have found staff retention a major issue.  Recent data from the Australian Government Productivity Commission’s 2021 ‘Working from home’ research paper suggests that:

  • Employees are moving onto new jobs at the fastest rate since the start of the pandemic
  • Almost 1 in 3 Australian companies say they are currently dealing with high staff turnover
  • Six in 10 prospective job seekers said they were primarily motivated to leave because they hadn’t seen a pay rise since the start of the pandemic
  • A recent Findex business report found that more than 500 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are concerned about their ability to retain staff over the next 12 months

How can businesses improve staff retention?

The obvious and perhaps not-so-easy answer for staff retention is always to fall back on staff wages.  As a business, do we simply pay someone a higher wage to ensure that we retain talented employees?

The answer is not as cut-and-dry as simply increasing salary. This can pose fresh problems for other staff members expecting similar increases and cause budgetary impacts in other areas of the business. It is simply not a sustainable way to retain staff.

One way to improve staff satisfaction and loyalty is to safeguard their long-term financial security.  This is where Group Insurance can be used effectively, enabling employers to offer tangible benefits that attract and retain the right people. And the best part is, your business will benefit as well.

What is Group Insurance?

Group Insurance can provide your employees with the security of Life, Total and Permanent Disability, Income Protection and Trauma Insurance at a discounted rate, without the need for medical underwriting (up to certain limits).  Because the risk is spread across everyone in the company, the cost for each employee can be up to 40% less than the premium they would pay under personal insurance policy.

In offering this valuable protection for your employees and their families, you are providing an attractive compensation package that will resonate in the post-Covid work environment. Additionally, it provides the added benefit of protection for your business against the costs of paying extended sick leave if your employee must take time off work.

Benefits for Employers

  • Assists in building a strong work culture through increased employee engagement within the business
  • You stand out as an employer of choice when new staff / recruits are considering their options
  • It allows you to attract and retain exceptional talent
  • It solves ethical and financial problems in the event an employee is on a long-term claim, allowing an employee to receive payment without the need for ‘doubling up’ on salary payments to replacement / temp workers

Benefits for Employees

  • Staff will feel supported by their employer with regards to their wellbeing and mental health
  • Provides staff with peace of mind with access to quality insurance cover
  • Increased financial security for themselves and their families
  • Inadvertent cost savings for staff that want to implement insurance cover

In the new world order of company culture and employee satisfaction, it is critical that employers explore and adapt different options to keep employees engaged and happy. Now more than ever, we understand the importance of our health and wellbeing and in providing employee benefits that address this, employers are well on their way to addressing this critical change to running a business in a post-Covid world.

Sources:

https://www.findex.com.au/insights/article/when-worlds-collide-small-business-meets-post-pandemic-life 

https://www.pc.gov.au/research/completed/working-from-home/working-from-home.pdf

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