The importance of communication

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In Canada, group benefits plans have come to be expected by employees.

However, the interesting thing is, generally, the perception of the value by the average employee does not differ from one plan to another regardless of the overall comprehensiveness of the plan.  Without effective employee communication, the employee experience is often very similar across the board.

I randomly reviewed the monthly cost of group insurance plans for three clients.  The cost was $254, $205 and $401 per employee per month, respectively. Without effective communication to employees, I would argue that the plan costing much more at $401 is not any more valued by the employees than the plans that cost $254 or $205 per month.

Not only is employee communication it the best way to obtain increased value for what employers are providing, it also helps to effectively manage and ensure a group insurance plan operates well.

With group insurance plans, communication strategies, such as holding employee meetings or issuing employee memos that include the benefits plan summary, will ensure greater understanding and appreciation by employees. With respect to retirement plans, to operate and govern group retirement plans within the Capital Accumulation Plan guidelines, annual face-to-face meetings are strongly suggested.

The best benefits plan is one that truly reflects the culture of an employer and does what the employer wants it to do when there is a death, a disability, high health & dental costs and provides an appropriate income for an employee when they retire.  The benefits plan should “speak” volumes about what the employer stands for and what is most important to them. Communication will help the employees “hear” and understand these volumes.

This article first appeared on the TRG Group blog.

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Transcontinental Media G.P.