5 Benefits for the Post-COVID Workforce. As the US recovers from the pandemic, organizations must reevaluate which benefits can best help their employees.
The Coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic brought significant change to the way that many Americans work. Some workforces have pivoted to full-time remote work, while others have blended models. However across all sectors and industries it’s clear that many employees have changed over the course of the pandemic and, as a result, the benefits they need from their employers are changing as well.
In the post-COVID workforce, attracting and retaining strong employees will likely look very different than it did pre-pandemic. These are some of the top employee benefits expected in the post-COVID workplace.
1. Reimbursement for a better work-from-home setup.
The International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans (IFEBP) released a January 2021 survey of 527 employers. The report highlights the effects of the pandemic on organizations’ employee benefits programs. One of the major findings was that because of the influx in employees working from home, many companies are offering reimbursements for necessary tools that employees would have previously had access to at the office.
For example, 31% of employers are reimbursing workers for items such as office supplies, electronic devices, and internet service. An additional 8% of employers are offering a general work-from-home stipend, and 17% of employers are considering work-from-home reimbursement for the future.
2. Increased remote flexibility and greater focus on work/life balance.
Corporate offices aren’t the only place where people are experimenting with hybrid models of in-person and at-home time. For plenty of employees, their children’s schooling arrangements can be a cause of conflict with work. As such, we’ve learned through COVID that flexible working hours are a huge positive for both productivity and wellbeing.
According to the same IFEBP survey from January 2021, a majority of 59% of employers have permitted flexible hours to employees in order to accommodate child care. Additional child support is also extremely helpful for many employees. The survey said 14% of employers are providing resources for childcare, tutoring, and emergency back-up care. Another 13% are considering doing the same.
3. More robust and inclusive healthcare options.
First and foremost, COVID-19 is a health crisis. That feels obvious, but oftentimes the conversation shifts to the social and economic outcomes of the pandemic. That said, one of the biggest moves a company can make is ensuring their employees feel secure in their physical wellbeing. Expect more robust healthcare options to be a main factor in employee benefits. This could mean anything from improved telehealth coverage, to paid time off for COVID-19 vaccines or booster shots.
4. Accessible mental health support.
The pandemic’s effect on the population has expedited the rise of mental health struggles such as anxiety and depression. Thankfully, employer’s seem to be trending in the right direction when it comes to offering mental health services. According to Care.com’s “The Future of Benefits” report, 41% of companies surveyed planned to expand mental health support in 2021. An additional 59% cited improved mental health as a primary outcome of their caregiving benefits.
5. A focus on financial wellness.
For many Americans, the pandemic led to significant financial stress as households lost income, childcare became less accessible and uncertainty reigned supreme. Although discussing money may feel taboo, financial stress can be overwhelming and lead to real consequences for mental and physical health. In a post-COVID world, the significance of financial wellness is more understood than ever before. Expect employee benefits to include personal finance resources in addition to traditional compensation packages.
Best Money Moves is a human-centered and individualized approach to financial wellbeing. The comprehensive and user-friendly platform provides a plethora of financial resources and educational tools. The library of resources contains over 700 articles, videos, and calculators. Each Best Money Moves user has their personal feed tailored to the several distinct factors that monitor their personal stress. This means your employee can use Best Money Moves to educate themselves on anything from investing in the stock market to co-signing loans to buying their first home.
Employee information is always private but employers do have access to key analytics that show overall employee financial stress and stress levels over time. The Employer Dashboard also features information on program usage, debt and savings levels and more so employers can see just how valuable Best Money Moves is to their employees.
If you want to learn more about how Best Money Moves can bring financial wellness to your company, download our whitepapers.