Hospitals and health systems are facing a talent crunch. As baby boomer providers prepare for retirement, an aging population also increases demand on health systems. As health care employers look for the talent they need to meet these challenges, employee benefits can help attract and retain top performers.
According to a benchmark study by Willis Towers Watson of employee benefits in the health care industry, the percentage of salary that health care employers spend on benefits is slightly less than the general market, although the employer-funded portion of medical benefits is slightly higher in the health care industry.
Giving employees a chance to save for retirement or college, purchase auto and home insurance, and pay for cafeteria meals and other items through payroll deductions can help make things more convenient for them as they save money. Payroll deductions are often used for retirement, but finding ways to offer other goods and services through them can be a valuable benefit. Southern Ohio Medical Center offers payroll deductions for a wide variety of uses, including house and car payments, uniforms, hospital and drug bills, and charitable donations.
Tuition assistance is always a popular benefit and can be especially valuable for both employers and employees in the health care industry. Southern Ohio Medical Center provides more than $5,000 for employees working on medical-related degrees and some master’s degrees. It also offers scholarships for children and spouses of employees.
Health care providers often offer discounted services within their own systems for employees and their families, and voluntary benefits are popular. The Mayo Clinic offers 100 percent coverage for preventive care services as well as in-network, expanded in-network and out-of-network coverage in every state. It also offers several levels of dental plans, a vision plan and telemedicine options.
While there isn’t a lot of workplace flexibility within the work day for health care employees, employers are looking for ways to provide flexibility within weekly or monthly schedules. Compressed work weeks, rotating shifts and other options can help employees find a work-life balance that fits their lifestyles. Texas Health Resources offers a compressed work week that around 5 percent of employees use.
Many health care organizations put an emphasis on their wellness programs as a part of preventive health to keep health care costs down. St. Jude Medical Center offers a five-point wellness program that focuses on getting active, eating healthy, preventing illness and injury, balancing work and family, and coping with stress. The organization offers free onsite fitness centers, group fitness and wellness classes and biometric screenings.
According to the Willis Towers Watson survey, retirement income plan values are more than 20 percent lower than the general market; organizations that can offer strong retirement plans can stand out among other employers. Some positions may have a defined-benefit plan or pension due to collective bargaining agreements. The Mayo Clinic offers a pension plan as well as 401(k)s and other retirement savings plans.
Winston Benefits is an HR solutions company that helps businesses enhance and optimize employee benefit plans, enrich compensation and rewards programs, and save money on benefits communication, enrollment and administration. Contact us to learn more.