Why Total Rewards for Employees is Worth It (Employers Guide)

After getting turned around over the last few years, the working world remains ultra competitive. Attracting and retaining top talent has never been more difficult. And if you do get top talent, there’s a strong chance they’ll soon be leaving for a new job.

Research underlines this reality. Gallup has found that half of employees are actively looking for new jobs in 2023. So if you’re not taking care of your employees, they’re already one foot out the door. This new world has forced employers to consider innovative solutions.

To combat the trend, one effective strategy is known as total rewards for employees. It’s a concept that offers holistic benefits to employees beyond the means of compensation, such as work-life balance, career development, recognition, rewards, and more. This strategy is effective because it recognizes the reality that money doesn’t solve all problems. At the end of the day, people want to be treated like people. Recognizing their humanity goes a very long way.

Moreover, total rewards programs are very effective at increasing employee engagement. This is valuable because an engaged employee is much less likely to leave their job due to feeling invested, valued, and inspired.

Here, we offer a guide for employers on why creating a total rewards program is worth it.

The Case for Total Rewards for Employees

The stats back up valuing the happiness of employees, too. Gallup research shows that employee engagement in the United States has gone down every year since 2020, with it currently sitting at 32%. 

However, for organizations that utilize best practices such as total rewards programs, that number is flipped on its head. Best practice organizations see engagement at a whopping 72%.

Total rewards for employees can be an effective strategy for increasing employee engagement and retention.

Via Gallup

In sectors such as retail, healthcare, and hospitality, employers are faced with the unique management of frontline workers. Their roles often come with challenges such as irregular hours, high physical demand, and, in some cases, more precarious financial stability. These challenges can lead to high turnover rates, affecting organizational consistency and morale.

Traditional reward systems often fall short of addressing the diverse needs of these employees. While wage increases and yearly bonuses are somewhat standard, they might not be enough to instill a sense of loyalty and belonging. Frontline workers require rewards that are not only monetary, but also provide emotional and professional value.

Strategic Benefits of Total Rewards for Employers

We’ve spent a lot of time talking about the benefits of Total Rewards for employees – but what about employers? When effectively communicated, there are numerous strategic benefits of total rewards. 

One of the most significant advantages of implementing a Total Rewards strategy is the marked improvement in employee retention and reduced turnover costs. By addressing the holistic needs of employees, employers can significantly reduce the costs associated with high turnover – such as recruitment, training, and lost productivity. 

Total Rewards, by fostering a more engaged and satisfied workforce, can cut these costs substantially. The Harvard Business Review highlights that employees who get professional development opportunities are 15% more engaged and have a 34% higher retention than those who don’t.

Beyond financial incentives, though, total rewards helps build a stronger company culture and employer brand. Showing commitment to employees improves the company culture and strengthens its reputation. And in the competitive job market, a strong employer brand can be a gamechanger as much as – if not more than – the financial compensation. 

By embedding total rewards into core values, companies can position themselves as preferred employers, attracting better talent and fostering a positive workplace environment. 

Further, there’s a direct link between employee satisfaction and their performance. Total Rewards, by catering to diverse employee needs, can lead to increased motivation and productivity. This improvement in performance directly impacts business outcomes, leading to higher quality of service, better customer satisfaction, and, ultimately, profitability. The bottom line is that when employees feel valued and supported, their performance and contribution to the company’s overall goals can increase immensely. 

The Future of Total Rewards in Evolving Workforce Dynamics

However, much of the argument for total rewards is based on what’s happened in the recent past. Of course, that’s valuable – the pandemic shifted work forever – but let’s look forward. How do total rewards work with the future of work? 

Companies leading in employee satisfaction often showcase a blend of traditional and modern rewards, adapting to the changing landscape of what employees value most in their careers. A recent Gallup and Workhuman study shows how recognition can transform an organization’s culture and generate engagement.

Further, the shift to remote work has dramatically influenced total rewards structures. Companies are now incorporating remote-friendly benefits, such as home office allowances, flexible schedules, and mental health support. This adaption not only supports employee well-being, but also caters to their changing work-life balance needs in a remote or hybrid environment. 

As the workforce changes and moves forward, total rewards will likely become more personalized and holistic. The focus might shift towards offering a more diverse array of benefits tailored to individual employee needs, encompassing mental health, financial wellness, and continuous learning opportunities. 

How Juice Can Help You Enhance Your Total Rewards Offering

Juice, with its innovative approach to financial solutions, stands at the forefront of enhancing employee compensation strategies. By integrating Juice’s FinTech into your Total Rewards framework, you provide employees with an agile and convenient way to receive bonuses, incentives, or expense reimbursements. This modern twist not only streamlines the reward process but also adds a layer of flexibility and immediacy to employee recognition, making your organization stand out as an employer of choice.

With features like Juice Mobile and Quick Start, employees enjoy seamless access to their funds and can activate their digital-first accounts with ease. This ease of use translates into a more engaged and financially empowered workforce, aligning perfectly with the goals of a Total Rewards program. By partnering with Juice, your organization can deliver a robust reward system that addresses the diverse needs of your workforce, fostering a culture of appreciation and financial well-being that resonates with current and prospective employees alike.

Employers That Value Total Rewards Create Employees Who Value Their Employers

The concept behind total rewards is actually pretty simple: People want to be treated like people. For too long, employers tended to take advantage of their employees – viewing them as cogs in a machine while trying to squeeze as much value out of them as possible. Instead, by prioritizing and implementing total rewards programs, employers can foster an environment of efficiency by valuing and supporting employees.

To implement it, employers can look to innovations in FinTech, which offer more streamlined and personalized reward experiences. These advancements make it easier for employers to manage and for employees to access their benefits, and the technologies promise a future where total rewards are more accessible, efficient, and aligned with employee preferences. For instance, at Juice, we offer our clients a way to integrate pay technology into their total rewards strategies
Curious how it can work? We invite you to explore our solutions and learn how we can help you adapt your rewards program to meet the future head on. Discover more!

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