January 2022 is coming to an end, and companies continue to optimize their employee health benefits. The business world has been consumed with talk about the great resignation, employee burnout, staff shortages, and a renaissance of employee values.

Our clients increasingly look at benefits to ensure their programs support all employees, with an eye on diversity and inclusion and employee retention. It is early in the year, but we see three trends emerging:

1. Mental Health

Mental health is an essential part of whole-person care, and companies are expanding their EAP programs to increased adoption of mental health apps. Telehealth has been an effective and growing way to provide mental health care when patients and providers are in different physical locations. It supports long-distance clinical health care using two-way telecommunications technologies like computers, tablets, or cell phones. Telehealth can improve access to mental health care and give patients and providers more flexibility.

2. Retirement Income Options

Employee Benefit Research Institute’s 2021 Retirement Confidence Survey reveals that 78% of workers are interested in putting some of their retirement savings into an investment option that would guarantee them monthly retirement income. In addition, the SECURE Act has reduced the fiduciary risk for your business and made it easier for you to provide employees with annuities as a retirement plan distribution option. As a result, a growing number of our clients are considering adding some type of guaranteed income option to their workplace savings plan to help older workers convert their retirement savings into a guaranteed income stream, the firm notes.

3. Emergency Savings Funds

The pandemic has highlighted the importance of having an emergency fund to help employees avoid tapping their retirement savings to cover unexpected financial emergencies. A recent survey by Fidelity about savings goals finds that workers recognize the benefits of having an emergency fund. The category of “emergency savings” was the highest reported savings goal. However, the survey also showed that nearly half of workers had saved less than three months of expenses. A growing number of our clients are exploring adding an emergency fund option that would allow employees to contribute directly from their paycheck with a set of tools to help employees evaluate and set their savings goals, including contributing to an emergency fund.

Give us a call today to learn more. PT Business Solutions is on the front line, working with businesses to formulate the optimal employee benefits packages to attract and retain employees.

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