5 Benefit Trends to Watch in 2021

In the midst of a health crisis, HR leaders are more focused on a holistic approach to employee well being. Work life is blending into personal life in the new work-from-home world. HR leaders see that employee health and wellbeing can be a delicate balancing act. Expanding beyond traditional health insurance plans, HR leaders are delivering more employee wellness benefits, including mental and financial health programs.

#1 Telemedicine Benefits

Telemedicine is not a new benefit and was often included in existing medical plans – but may have had low utilization. The 2020 health crisis changed that and usage of virtual doctors soared. A recent survey by Updox reported that employees appreciate the convenience of scheduling appointments that fit into their busy personal and work schedules. Respondents also reported that the follow up communication is more streamlined.

#2 Mental Health Benefits

One of the positive healthcare developments that the pandemic has brought is a renewed focus on the importance of mental health services. Leaders are more focused than ever on removing the stigma around mental health issues and engaging employees early and often to ensure that they are more than just “fine”.

It’s noteworthy to consider that during 2021, Forrester predicts one third of virtual care appointments will be related to mental health issues.

 #3 Financial Wellness Programs

A good financial wellness program focuses on the employee and helps reduce employee stress. By working to minimize financial challenges and maximize financial opportunities, employees are able to concentrate better on their work rather than their bills, loans, or bank balance.

#4 Flexible Work Arrangements

While many companies have opted in to temporary work-from-home programs, there are many indications that remote work is here to stay.  Adding flexible work arrangements will help  employees balance their family obligations and their work duties, and many note that such programs can make a company more attractive to prospective employees.

#5 Social Responsibility Benefits

Employees want to work for employers who give back to their community and care about important social issues. Offering volunteer time off (VTO) to employees to support their non-profit causes can attract and retain top talent.  Volunteering can also directly improve employee health.

To get connected to a benefit consultant who can help you design and deliver an employee wellness benefits program, contact us and we’ll find you a great partner in our network.