small businesses may face challenges when it comes to retaining
employees’ satisfaction and loyalty. However, by investing in
voluntary benefits programs that cater to the individualized needs of
their teams, business owners can show their commitment to their
from MetLife’s 2023 U.S. Employee Benefit Trends Study
sheds light on the importance of offering a range of benefits and
tailoring them to individual needs, simplifying administration, and
effectively communicating these offerings. By doing so, small
businesses can cultivate a happier, healthier workforce and compete
with larger organizations in terms of employee satisfaction and
loyalty, ultimately securing their future success.
businesses may not have the financial ability to provide ‘big
business’ benefits, particularly during times of economic
uncertainty,” said Cynthia Smith, Senior Vice President of Regional
Business at MetLife.
“However, even a small investment in workplace benefits and
programs can improve outcomes for employees, particularly when
employers focus on the benefits most in demand among today’s
invest in voluntary benefits?
workforce is increasingly diverse, and employees are looking for
benefits that align with their unique circumstances.
expanded benefit choices, including employee-paid voluntary options,
helps employees get the protection they need at competitive group
rates,” Smith explained. “In turn, stand-out benefits can help to
recruit and retain the top talent that small businesses need to
employee benefits, such as non-medical benefits and wellness
programs, offer small businesses a competitive edge in attracting and
retaining talent. These benefits, while optional, demonstrate a
commitment to employee well-being and work-life balance, making the
company more appealing to potential hires.
benefits such as dental, vision, life, disability insurance, or legal
plans are a huge value-add for any small business,” Smith
explained. “In fact, over half (56%) of small business employees
state that employee benefits/workplace benefits offered to them make
them feel more engaged at work, and 62% report that they make them
feel more loyal to their employer.”
these additional benefits contribute to higher employee satisfaction
and retention rates by fostering a sense of value and support.
Voluntary benefits allow employees to customize their coverage by
providing options that align with their individual needs and
preferences, ultimately leading to a more engaged workforce.
top voluntary benefits for small businesses
extensive customer base provides valuable insights into the voluntary
benefits most valued by today’s workers. Among the top preferences
are dental insurance (74%) and vision care (67%). These traditional
benefits continue to be crucial for employee satisfaction and
2023 U.S. Employee Benefit Trends Study also found that there is
growing interest in emerging benefits. Over half of employees express
interest in disability programs (54%), and demand for pet insurance
(21%) is on the rise compared to data from 2022. Moreover, more than 3 in 10
employees desire benefits such as critical illness insurance (41%),
accident insurance (38%), disability insurance (35%), and financial
planning tools/workshops (34%) that their friends, family, and
Non-medical benefits such as dental, vision, life, disability insurance, or legal plans are a huge value-add for any small business.
Cynthia Smith, Senior Vice President of Regional Business, MetLife
voluntary benefits with MetLife
businesses considering voluntary benefits for the first time, it can
be difficult to know where to begin. Speaking with a professional
from a trusted provider like MetLife and receiving concrete answers
to your questions can provide some clarity.
working with MetLife, small business owners have access [to]
MetLife’s experience in this market as well as its small business
experts,” Smith explained. “The dedicated small business team
works with over 40,000 small businesses, each with its own needs.”
are a few of Smith’s top tips to help streamline the enrollment
To kickstart the process, contact an expert to guide you.
about the range of benefit offerings, customization options, and the
flexibility to meet the needs of your business and employees.
and compare plans. Request
comprehensive information on available plans, their features, and
associated costs. Gathering this information will help you make an
informed decision about your most suitable option.
with a broker or benefit consultant.
In some cases, you can partner with a broker or consultant who will
provide you with expert guidance and ensure you make the most of
your benefit offerings.
common misconception is that implementing and administering group
benefits can be too time-consuming for small business owners who
often wear multiple hats. However, providers like MetLife can
simplify the administration of benefits by consolidating multiple
coverages with a single carrier, thereby increasing efficiency and
saving you time and money.
to implement and communicate a voluntary benefits program
a new voluntary benefits program is only part of the equation;
effectively communicating it is equally crucial. As employers add
voluntary benefits offerings to their employee experience, they
should communicate these options clearly and provide personalized
enhance employees’ understanding and build a happier, more loyal
workforce, employers should engage employees through various
communication channels and incorporate personalization into their
benefits communication strategies.
a time when workplace dynamics are driven by financial stress, small
businesses have an opportunity to stand out by anticipating and
adapting to employees’ ever-changing needs,” Smith said.
“Workplace benefits and programs play a central role in the
employee experience and can be a powerful lever with which to bolster
loyalty, satisfaction, and happiness.”
CO— aims to bring you inspiration from leading respected experts.
However, before making any business decision, you should consult a
professional who can advise you based on your individual situation.