In this week’s Best Money Moves roundup, we take a look at news stories and new research studies that may impact employee benefits and HR issues. We hope you find this news roundup helpful, and we’d love your feedback.


Unemployment rates dropped throughout 2016 and in November hit 4.6 percent, the lowest they’ve been since August 2007. While that’s good news for the economy, it also means employers face more competition when trying to recruit top talent for their organizations. But focusing only on recruiting — and not making the effort to retain those new employees — can create a cycle where new employees don’t stay long and employers have to recruit yet more employees. This is why employee retention will be the top HR challenge of 2017.

What is the best way to raise employee performance? One recent study found that up to 70 percent of variance in employee performance can be attributed to the quality of their managers. Learn more about how the right manager can help your employees.

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. It also makes your employees less likely to stick around. A new study suggests that allowing employees to loosen up and have more fun at work will actually make them better at their jobs.

Trends in the employee benefits industry come and go with changes in technology, the economy and workers’ lifestyles. Twenty years of research by SHRM gives us a look at the trends that have come and gone and which ones may be coming to your workplace next.

How helpful is an annual performance review? Some research suggests once-a-year reviews don’t affect performance much. If your company does do annual reviews, here are the steps managers can take to make them most effective.

From election uncertainty to wearable fitness trackers to online medicine, there were a lot of changes in the employee benefits industry in 2016. Here are the 12 most influential trends.

Travel is becoming an in-demand employee perk. It boosts morale, reduces stress and encourages personal growth through exposure to new people and cultures. Here are a few ideas for incorporating it into your company’s policies.

Are your employees using all of their vacation time? A new survey from BankRate found that more than half — 52 percent — of employees won’t use all of their 2016 vacation days, and that can have a negative impact on their careers.

From tech CEO to HR professionals, here are 30 people poised to make waves in the employee benefits industry in 2017.

What’s the best way to keep your top employees from leaving? The 2016 SHRM and Globoforce Employee Recognition Survey found that companies budgeting 1 percent or more of payroll toward values-based recognition programs are two times more likely to see increased retention from the programs.

Did you find this Best Money Moves roundup useful? Please let us know. Email us at [email protected].

It’s hard to stay on top of everything in the news. That’s why each week our Best Money Moves newsroom will bring you the most important news in financial wellness, employee benefits and financial stress. We hope you like the information and, if you do, please spread the word. For midweek developments, follow us on Twitter and on Facebook.