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Andrew Luck has a new game plan. It’s not the plan he – or anyone – dreamed of when he was picked first in the 2012 NFL draft. But now, in leaving his beloved sport having tried to come back from injury after brutal injury, he’s chosen his own physical and mental health over continued pain and frustration.
He admitted to himself, and to his fans this past Saturday, that there was little joy left for him in playing the game. None of us can predict when the tipping point may come or what may trigger us to step back and reassess what’s best for ourselves, our families or even our organizations.
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”
Benjamin Franklin’s quote actually was referring to fire safety – but the sentiment relates to many situations, even employee benefits. And especially football. One could argue that prevention – like a better offensive line – may have saved Luck a lot of pain and even extended his career.
To prevent losing good talent at your company, it’s wise to reassess your benefits programs during every annual renewal, especially in Indiana’s aggressive employment market. Do you think your benefits are competitive enough to withstand the enticement of something better?
The top drivers of job satisfaction include pay and benefits, according to the Society for Human Resource Management’s Employee Job Satisfaction and Engagement Survey. So taking stock of how competitive your total compensation packages are compared to other employers is one key preventive strategy for keeping your best talent.
It may be time for a new benefits game plan if you can relate to the following:
Challenges with recruitment and/or retention.
Andrew has had enough. Maybe he’s been considering the “right time” to leave and maybe a recent event triggered him to retire now rather than later. An employee who feels overburdened or unsupported is vulnerable to walking out the door, especially when recruiters and the lure of better benefits come knocking. It’s quite possible that another employer’s total compensation package is more generous or innovative than yours and, combined with dissatisfaction, leads that employee right to their tipping point to say, “I’ve had enough.”
The work environment feels toxic.
Starting with his first shoulder injury and with every progressive sack, Luck was doomed to check out early. You have to wonder what, if anything, Colts coaches and leadership could have done to better protect their star QB. What are you doing to protect your own employees from toxic work environments? Listening to and observing your employees is vital to understanding who they are and what drives them. And according to the 2019 Apex Benefits Employee Benefits Benchmarking Study, just 62% of Indiana employers offer an Employee Assistance Program (EAP), which is crucial to supporting employees through personal problems and/or work-related issues that may impact their job performance and overall well-being. Mental health issues are not something to be swept under the rug. In fact, 72% of employees want employers to champion mental health and well-being in the workplace (SAMSHA 2017).
Work-life balance across generations.
By 2025, the workforce will be dominated by Millennials, people born between 1981 and 1995 – like Andrew Luck. The value propositions of this generation and the benefits they desire can be very different from Gen X and Baby Boomers, for example. A younger workforce likely translates to more employees in child-bearing years and paid parental leave is important to them. In Indiana today, less than 30% of employers offer some form of paid parental leave compared to 52% of the U.S., according to the Apex Benchmarking Report. By creating more family-friendly policies, Indiana employers can make a larger impact on employee livelihood and even possibly realize a competitive edge with attracting top talent in the future.
If you can relate to any of the above situations, it may be time for your organization to develop a new game plan before good employees are lost. A good place to start is assessing how your benefits stack up against other employers. Apex offers an Indiana Employee Benefits Benchmarking Report customized for your organization. The free report can provide solid insight to your greatest threats and opportunities for attracting and retaining top talent.