Majority of employers not measuring benefits effect

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Two thirds of employers do not have any processes in place to measure the effectiveness of their benefit spend.

According to the survey of organisations with between 500 and 2,000 employees, just 18% agreed (14%) or strongly agreed (4%) they had appropriate metrics (both financial and non-financial) to assess the effectiveness of their benefit plans.

And 63% of respondents to the Towers Watson Benefits Health Check research said they did not have any such metrics in place.

These results could be even more concerning when almost half (48%) the employers said they were spending between 16% and 25% of a typical employee's salary on benefits.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, employers with defined benefit (DB) pension schemes had higher benefit costs than those with only defined contribution (DC) arrangements.

Encouragingly the majority of the 57 respondents agreed (45%) or strongly agreed (16%) that they had a consistent philosophy and strategy across the benefits offered to employees.

And almost identical numbers (45% and 14% respectively) agreed that the benefit philosophy and strategy aligned with the business' needs.

However, failing to measure the effectiveness of benefits packages could also affect the impact of whether benefits spend is getting the desired messages across.

Towers Watson London retirement solutions managing director Peter Routledge said: "With over half of employers saying they have reviewed one or all of their pension or benefit plans in the last year, it is clear that there is a desire to align benefits with business needs.

"As such, the ability to measure and monitor how well pension and benefit provision is working will be essential in ensuring that these plans remain fit for the future.

"In addition, employers with open DB plans need to ensure the additional costs are offset by increased employee appreciation and engagement," he added.

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