With 11.5 million job openings in the U.S., the Great Resignation is going strong, and the financial services sector is no exception. According to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 100,000 employees resigned from jobs in the financial services industry each month for the first three months of 2022, with March data reflecting a 27% increase over the December 2021 quit rate.
Such high turnover comes at a cost. Replacing a salaried employee can cost an organization up to two times the position’s salary. Moreover, credit unions are particularly affected by staffing shortages that directly impact customer service and member retention.
The good news is, credit unions can have an advantage over other organizations in that they are often smaller and nimbler, making them better able to respond proactively to employee preferences. Better benefits can go a long way toward attracting and retaining talent.
What Employees Want
Today’s workers want more than a steady salary and a gold watch at retirement. Employees have an expanded view of benefits in pursuit of a job that feels meaningful and provides a balance between their work and personal lives.
Consider incorporating the following seven employee perks to help your CU lessen the Great Recession’s impact and thrive in the face of change.
Flexible hours and the ability to work remotely are increasingly considered vital components of a healthier work/life balance. Nearly 40% of workers cite flexibility as one of the top three factors when making career decisions. And flexibility benefits the whole organization: greater flexibility can lead to fewer distractions and more productivity.
Companies that offer remote or hybrid options to their teams will stand out over those that don’t. Although remote work may not be feasible for public-facing employees such as tellers, flexibility is still an option. Four-day weeks, staggered shifts, flexible break times, and increased autonomy on the job are all desirable options.
2. Internal mobility
Another way to attract and retain workers is through a clear path to promotion. Advancement ability is a key factor in employee retention, especially among younger people. Almost 90% of millennials say they’d stay in their job for the next decade if their employer assured them of annual raises and upward career mobility.
Investing in employees, providing transparent feedback about what workers need to do to get ahead, and actively recruiting from within can go a long way in retaining talent.
Think outside the box of traditional benefits to incorporate company diversity as a highlight of your recruiting and retention efforts. After all, more than three-quarters of job seekers (76%) say they take a diverse workforce into consideration when deciding whether to accept a job.
Organizations risk losing out on talent if they aren’t transparent about employee demographics and diversity efforts. Specifically, according to Glassdoor, 32% of job candidates would not even apply for a position if a company lacks diversity in its workforce.
Many organizations are reacting to the Great Resignation by offering their workers more money. The majority of companies (58%) offered higher salaries and wages in 2021 than in the previous year. Leveling compensation also provides the opportunity to correct pay inequities that continue to impact women and minorities.
Beyond base salary or wages, compensation can also take other employee-attracting forms, such as:
- student loan payment contributions
- one-time bonuses
- training stipends
- stock options
- childcare stipends
5. Mental health support
Employees want to see more employer investment in mental health and wellness. This is particularly true for Gen Z, where 66% believe more investment in mental health would improve organizational culture. As a result, organizations are offering more mental health wellness programs, and employees are taking advantage of them.
Employees aren’t the only ones who benefit from the support. Better employer-sponsored mental health support can result in more productivity, less absenteeism, and decreased overall medical costs.
6. Meaningful work
Disengagement is a driving factor in the Great Resignation. According to a recent Gallup poll, most workers are either not engaged or are actively disengaged from their jobs, and a large segment of these employees are actively looking for new jobs.
Workers want to feel like they are making a worthwhile contribution to their organizations and society as a whole. Clearly articulate your organization’s vision to ensure each employee understands how their work fits into the bigger picture. Benefits that increase engagement include:
- employee recognition programs
- group service projects
- mentorship initiatives
7. Health care
A robust health care plan lets employees know they are valued and cared for, increases employee satisfaction and results in a healthier, more productive workforce. A recent study found that health insurance is often a deciding factor in whether to stay at a job. It follows that credit unions that offer high-quality health plans to their employees will have an edge in competing for talent.
Develop a custom benefits plan
The ability to tailor your organization’s benefits to the unique needs of your staff is key to employee retention and competing effectively in the job market.
Fortunately, you don’t have to figure it out on your own. CU Benefits Alliance is known for customizing benefits to the specific needs of our clients. Our mission is to help you create a benefits program that reflects your credit union’s values as much as your financial goals.
Better benefits lead to happier, more productive employees and put you in a stronger position to compete for talent. Smarter benefits mean getting the same or better quality for less money — savings that CUs can redirect to higher compensation or other employee incentives.
To learn more about how we can help your credit union develop a better benefits program, schedule a free consultation with us today.