Competition for talent remains high today
McKinsey & Company first coined the phrase “war for talent” in the late 1990s when competition started to increase globally. With job hopping slowly becoming the norm, the talent wars have become increasingly intense, making it even more difficult for companies to retain employees today. SHRM, the Society for Human Resource Management, reported that in 2021 more than half of all surveyed employees were planning to look for a new job.
Because of this phenomenon, we are seeing a shift of power away from companies and toward employees. This means companies are more and more required to make the role, environment and compensation compelling to attract and retain talent, optimally over a significant portion of the employee’s lifecycle. The NFP US Benefits Trend Report in 2022 revealed that about 70% of employees are more likely to work for an employer that offers attractive employee-paid benefits than an employer that does not. In fact, according to the 2020 Benefits Benchmark Report from TriNet Zenefits, nearly 4 in 5 (79%) of employees would prefer new or additional benefits over a pay increase!
In the past couple of years, accelerated by Covid19, employers have moved towards offering flexible hours and remote opportunities, both great benefits for employees who are looking for or need more flexibility in their work lives. However, as most companies now offer flexible hours and remote opportunities, this is not enough for for companies to curb attrition meaningfully. A more holistic approach to employee benefits, throughout the employee lifecycle, is necessary.
Family benefits serve as a pillar to attracting and retaining talent
Maven Clinic’s “The State of Family Health Benefits 2022” report states that family benefits have become an increasingly important pillar for companies to attract and retain talent. The study finds that 57% of surveyed employees look to expand their families –making family benefits central in every company’s recruiting and retention strategy. This means that to better attract and retain the most talented employees, it is crucial for corporations to offer comprehensive benefits for employees. These benefits also serve for employees as an implicit indicator what a company stands for and believes in.
While many employers have started to implement some family benefits such as extended parental leave and return-to-work flexibility, the Maven Clinic report also suggests that the benefits currently offered are simply not enough. 60% of employees surveyed by Maven said they’ve left or are considering leaving their job due to inadequate family benefits, defined as fertility, pregnancy, birth, and postpartum support. This research indicates that considerable gaps exist between the support people need to start and build a family and the help and support currently provided.
One area the insufficient healthcare coverage becomes evident, and where current employees are no longer satisfied, is with the standard insurance coverage for prenatal medical appointments and the birth. Instead, they are looking for comprehensive pregnancy and postpartum services and support that prepare families for this new journey.
To create a competitive family benefits program, it’s key for employers to consider the employee’s entire family lifecycle – from planning, fertility to parenthood.
In person family benefits round out a comprehensive, attractive offering
Over the past few years, several online providers have entered the market with significant support and upside. It is a step in the right direction and certainly a much-needed add-on. However, all these services tend to remain in the virtual, or telehealth space – which is a great addition but cannot replace live, in person support when you go through pregnancy aches, labor pains, or have a newborn baby that is not sleeping.
This is where doula care come in – an in-person support model for parents during pregnancy, birth, and postpartum. Doulas are non-medical support people, usually women, that support families during pregnancy, birth and labor, and postpartum. Many studies have shown, such as by Cochrance, WHO, or NCBI, that doulas reduce the risk of premature birth, lower c-section rates by 1/3 and reduce interventions and birth trauma.
Having an experienced doula can help families much better prepare for the time with baby, while making pregnancy and birth more manageable. Postpartum depression rates are significantly decreased when doulas serve families – which is relevant for both partners and current postpartum depression rates of 10-20% in men and women! Having additional support available allows new families to recover faster, settle in, and facilitate a smoother return into the workplace after parental leave. The overall costs for this service are small, which is entirely offset by decreased healthcare costs and a more productive, and often faster, return into the workforce.
In addition, doula care helps alleviate the issue of disproportionate disparities in maternal health outcomes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, black women are three times more likely to die from a pregnancy-related cause than white women. The introduction of doulas as culturally competent care for black families has shown to completely off-set these discrepancies and increase racial health equity.
Some large corporations, such as CVS and Target, have begun to acknowledge the benefits of doula care and are offering monetary stipends. However, finding the right doula care in a highly fragmented market, with a lot of varying quality standards, can be a very challenging task for an expecting family! A more comprehensive, impact-measuring program, such as the one Alimus offers, is beneficial not only to corporations to track their efforts, but also for parents, to reduce uncertainty and time required to find appropriate care.
If you are interested in learning more about how doula care can set your family benefits program apart from your competition, support your DEI strategy, reduce your healthcare spend, and take better care of your employees, please contact us today at email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sources: pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov; https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1595172/, Cochrane.org, WHO, https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1523-536X.2008.00221.x, https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/pdf/10.1111/birt.12218,