We’re still very reticent about discussing salaries. Businesses don’t often advertise their pay scales, and employees don’t want to talk about their salaries with each other. This can give the whole compensation package an air of mystique.

Even more of a mystery are employee benefitsEmployees just don’t seem to understand the true value of the benefits they are being offered. Do you know what the total value of your employee benefit scheme is?

The Charlton Consulting Group conducted research into this area. It was then analysed and reported in the HR Daily Advisor who found that, employees “estimate the cost of benefits paid to be 30%, or less, over and above pay”. Whereas in fact, according to government statistics, the average cost of benefits is 43% of pay.


Employers are at fault

Of course, if employees don’t understand the cost of employee benefits, then that’s not their fault, that’s the fault of the employer.

Employers need to recognise that their employees are unlikely to understand the value of benefits and they need to take action to address it. By letting your employees know the value of your investment in the scheme, and therefore in them, you can increase take up, improve employee loyalty, reduce staff attrition and increase morale.



The key to helping employees understand the true cost and value of their employee benefits package is education. You need to get better at internal communication.

Open the lines of communication with your employees before you’ve even recruited them, by promoting their value within job offer letters. You can then reinforce the message with a dedicated session on employee benefits during their induction period – just beware of information overload!

You should then keep reinforcing the message that you are investing in your employees through your employee benefits scheme.

Here are three ways you can reinforce the message:


Involving the family

I know from experience that partners, spouses and families can all play a big part when it comes to deciding which employee benefits people should take. There’s been many a time when I’ve sat down with my other half to discuss which benefits he should sign up for that year. Therefore, a great way of really effectively communicating the value of your benefits is to involve the families of your employees.

You can organise an employee benefits evening, where employees and their partners, spouses and families can come along and find out more about the employee benefits package. You could have a presentation on the investment and value of the total employee benefits package; testimonials from people who’ve used the benefits; and allow your employees to talk to people, in order to find out more about the specific benefits that are offered.

These events help employees’ partners, spouses and families to appreciate the value of the benefits package offered; provide easy, knowledgeable access to benefits; and help them with deciding which benefits best suit their needs.

Don’t make the mistake of assuming your employees understand the value of your employee benefits scheme, and how much you are investing in them – they don’t. It’s the job of the employer to educate their employees so that they can make the most of their investment in their employees.

Kuljit Kaur

Kuljit is responsible for business development at The Voucher Shop, a  division of p&mm ltd. Your one stop shop for corporate vouchers and gift cards for employee benefits, recognition or rewards.