Health insurance is the second most valued benefit

Nearly nine in 10 (89%) UK workers claim benefit provision is important in their decision to work for a company, research shows.

The study of 2,000 UK workers by Willis Towers Watson also found contributory pension schemes are the most valued benefit, chosen as a top five benefit by 62% of workers.

This was followed by health insurance (43%), life insurance (40%), critical illness cover (35%) and health cash plans (32%).

Mark Ramsook, of Willis Towers Watson Health and Benefits, said companies looking for high quality candidates, or wishing to hold on to their existing employee base, should consider benefits as part of their talent management strategies.

Despite the importance placed on benefits, 67% of workers said their employer has never consulted them on their rewards and benefits preferences.

Furthermore, less than half of workers (48%) said they were satisfied with their benefits package. Low earners were less satisfied with their benefits package (43%) than their higher earning colleagues (60%).

“A gulf exists between what workers want and what employees think they need,” added Ramsook.

“A disparity between low and high earners may be expected, as provision increases with salary, but companies should ask if they are adequately catering for their lower paid workers, as they form the backbone of any operation.”