More than half (55%) of small businesses would consider introducing other employee benefits as part of auto-enrolment, research for Canada Life has found.
The research fonud that 71% of small business employers would be open to discussions about group life.
Perceived expense was the most common reason (42%) for not offering group life and 91% of small business employers thought it would cost more than 1% of salaries.
Almost three in ten (29%) of employers have not begun preparing for Auto-enrolment from June, the survey of 500 employers with 0-49 staff conducted in April found.
The most popular reason employers already offered group life cover was that it was attractive for employees (33%) and 24% offer it to protect or support their employees.
One in ten small business employers have no knowledge or awareness of group life cover while 40% admitted to knowing little about it.
Paul Avis, marketing director at Canada Life Group Insurance, said: "After a year of undertaking and reviewing SME research we are 100% confident that a simple, inexpensive level of Group Life cover, considered alongside every auto-enrolment pension discussion, is a great way for organisations to augment their pensions work.
"Our research leads us to believe that, if this option is properly presented, employers can see that the cost of Group Life cover and the benefits, for them as well as their employees, are very attractive.
"Smaller businesses often have more of a family feel and there is concern about the impact of an employee's death on their dependants and on the organisation as a whole.
"Simplicity and ease of implementation are clearly important considerations for employers too.
"A short conversation about Group Life benefits with the pension's adviser can fulfil an important requirement for staff retention and attraction.
"There is no doubt in my mind that the war for talent has raised its head again, and with every employer about to offer a pension scheme, organisations need to think about how they differentiate themselves and their benefits packages.
"Group Life is a great starting point."
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