Companies Should Seek To Leverage the Digital Workplace

Companies Should Seek To Leverage the Digital Workplace

Employees who work in digital workplaces tend to have relatively high levels of productivity and motivation, but organizations should be alert to security risks associated with these technologies, and to the emergence of a gap between employees who are and are not technologically adept, according to a global study conducted by Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise company.

The results of the study, “The Right Technologies Unlock the Potential of the Digital Workplace,” were based on interviews conducted in April and May 2018 with 7,000 employees working at organizations based in 15 countries across the globe, including the U.S. The findings revealed that a more digitally-driven workplace has both business and human benefits, and that companies that are less technologically advanced are at risk of falling behind the competition and failing to attract top talent. The study also warned that a clear chasm in employee performance and sentiment is emerging between more advanced digital workplaces and those that use digital technology to a lesser extent, and that companies must be vigilant as more digital-savvy employees are taking greater risks with data and information security.

Specifically, the analysis showed that “Digital Revolutionaries,” or employees identified as those who work in fully-enabled digital workplaces where new workplace technologies are in widespread use, were 51% more likely to report having strong job satisfaction and were 43% more likely to say they feel positive about their work-life balance than “Digital Laggards,” or those who have less access to workplace technology. The findings also showed that Revolutionary employees were also 60% more likely to say they are motivated at work, and 91% more likely to praise their company’s vision.

The study also found that rather than perceiving advancements in digital technology and automation as a threat to job security, most of the employees surveyed are enthusiastic about these technologies, with 71% saying they would welcome a fully automated workplace in the future that allows their employer to build a smarter, more effective working environment. The results further showed almost all of the respondents (93%) think their workplace would be improved through greater use of technology, and large shares are confident that digital technology will result in a more efficient (56%), more collaborative (52%), and more appealing (47%) work environment.

While confirming that the benefits of digital workplaces are wide-ranging, the study also cautioned that cybersecurity remains a challenge for employers. The study recommended that companies seek to adapt to leverage the benefits of new digital workplace technology while simultaneously minimizing security risks organizations by adopting a digital workplace strategy, building collaborative digital workspaces, and incorporating security into the workplace from the ground up.

From Benefit Trends Newsletter, Volume 61, Issue 7

The information contained in this newsletter is for general use, and while we believe all information to be reliable and accurate, it is important to remember individual situations may be entirely different. The information provided is not written or intended as tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for purposes of avoiding any Federal tax penalties. Individuals are encouraged to seek advice from their own tax or legal counsel. This newsletter is written and published by Liberty Publishing, Inc., Beverly, MA. Copyright © 2018 Liberty Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved.

Employers Value Usability Over Cost When Choosing Benefits Platforms

Employers Value Usability Over Cost When Choosing Benefits Platforms

When human resources professionals are choosing among benefits administration technology platforms, price is less important than ease of use and the extent to which the technology can be integrated with HR information systems, a survey by employee benefits advisory firm Pacific Resources has found.

The survey of senior HR or benefits executives from 91 organizations across a range of industries was conducted during June and July 2017. The survey was designed to capture the current perspectives on benefits administration platforms of some of the largest employers in the U.S. as these platforms grow in both competition and complexity.

The results showed that the most valuable outcomes employers have reported in their experience with benefits administration platforms are best-in-class employee user experience (49%) and the ability to integrate benefits technology with HR functions (37%). By contrast, the total outsourcing of HR/benefits business processes and below-market costs were rated as valuable by less than 10% of respondents.

The 2017 survey also found that cost is no longer the driving factor when selecting a benefits administration platform: only 23.9% of respondents cited cost as the most important consideration in 2017, down from 64.4% in 2016. In the 2017 survey, the most important factors were identified as administrative ease at 61.4%, up from 38% in 2016; and empowering employees to make informed benefits decisions at 51.5%, up from 24.4% in 2016.

The findings also showed that 83.2% of the employers surveyed view communication, employee education, and engagement as integral to their overall health and welfare benefits delivery strategy; and that 88.8% of respondents see cost calculators, plan comparison tools, and guided decision-support tools that help employees select benefits that meet their personal and family needs as at least somewhat effective.

The share of respondents who indicated that they outsource employee eligibility and enrollment processes also increased sharply, from 36% in 2016 to 58% in 2017. By contrast, just 30% of respondents said they currently manage all employee eligibility and enrollment processes in-house, and expect to continue to do so.

While the findings indicated that the employers polled are confident in and rely on technology to deliver benefits, only 45.5% of respondents said they are likely to remain with their current benefits administration platform vendor, while 29.5% said they are unsure and 25% said they are likely to request bids from other platform vendors.

The survey also asked the HR professionals what approach they are using to manage their health and welfare benefits in response to the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The largest share of respondents (43.7%) said their approach will be dictated by the outcome of changes to the ACA.

From Benefit Trends Newsletter, Volume 61, Issue 3

The information contained in this newsletter is for general use, and while we believe all information to be reliable and accurate, it is important to remember individual situations may be entirely different. The information provided is not written or intended as tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for purposes of avoiding any Federal tax penalties. Individuals are encouraged to seek advice from their own tax or legal counsel. This newsletter is written and published by Liberty Publishing, Inc., Beverly, MA. Copyright © 2018 Liberty Publishing, Inc. All rights reserved.