The Benefits Of Benefits: Why Employers Can't Afford Inadequate Workplace Perks

June 19, 2018

ATLANTAJune 19, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- Randstad US today released results from a recent survey exploring the perspectives and desires of U.S. workers relating to benefits in the workplace. The takeaway? Almost all employees (94%) want their employers to ensure the benefits offered have a meaningful impact on their quality of life, like paying off student loan debt and offering more flexible work arrangements. But before employers attempt a benefits overhaul, they should perhaps focus on better education and communication about their existing benefits. Just under half (48%) of employees report knowing all the perks their employers offer, and only 40 percent say their employers help them understand the benefits that are available.

Benefits packages are a make-or-break aspect of a job offer 
Benefits can be an even stronger incentive than salary when considering a job offer, and an unattractive benefits package may drive candidates away.

  • Sixty-six percent of workers agree that a strong benefits and perks package is the largest determining factor when considering job offers, and 61 percent would be willing to accept a lower salary if a company offered a great benefits package.
  • Forty-two percent of employees say they are considering leaving their current jobs because their benefits packages are inadequate.
  • Fifty-five percent have left jobs in the past because they found better benefits or perks elsewhere.

Both benefits and perks matter 
When evaluating benefits, quality health insurance reigns supreme. But when it comes to perks, the survey findings indicate that workers want to maximize their time spent at work and appreciate conveniences that help them get the most out of their days. 

  • When considering a potential employers' benefits (defined in the study as "standard forms of compensation paid by employers to employees over and above salary"), workers prioritize health insurance (75%), followed by retirement funds and/or pensions (21%).
  • Highly rated perks (defined in the study as "workplace-related extras"), that workers want to see more of in the workplace are:
    • early Friday releases (33%)
    • flexibility and remote working (26%)
    • onsite lifestyle amenities, like gyms and dry cleaning (23%)
    • unlimited vacation time (22%)
    • in-office meal options, like communal snacks or food courts (18%)
    • onsite childcare (15%)

When it comes to benefits and perks, one size does not fit all
Age, income level and gender all play a role in the benefits that employees prioritize:

  • Forty-one percent of respondents aged 18 to 24 said their current employers do not offer student loan repayment benefits, but wish they did.
  • Workers aged 50+ named health insurance as the top benefit they wish their employers offered.
  • Nearly a third (28%) of respondents who earn more than $150,000 annually say bonuses are one of the most important perks when considering new employment.
  • More women than men want better parental leave policies (women: 22% vs. men: 14%) and onsite childcare (women: 15% vs. men: 6%).
  • More men than women would like to see their employers offer life insurance (women: 15% vs. men: 23%).

While it may not be possible to offer every benefit or perk, there are plenty of low-cost ways for employers to accommodate or enhance their employees' lifestyles. A great way for leaders to find out what would be appreciated within their own organization is by asking current employees. To be successful, the employer must be prepared to follow through on — or at least address — all of the feedback.

"With the rise of the agile workforce and flexible work arrangements, the lines between 'home' and 'work' are increasingly blurred," said Jim Link, chief human resources officer at Randstad North America. "But what's telling is that, although employees clearly express a desire for more freedom over where and how they work, when they are in the office, they take that time very seriously. That's why onsite amenities that make the workplace as comfortable and convenient as possible are still so attractive."

To learn more information about the impact of benefits and perks in the workplace, visit work perks and benefits: what employees and candidates want.

Survey Methodology 
Research findings are based on an OmniPulse survey fielded by national polling firm Research Now on behalf of Randstad US. The survey was fielded from April 9-13, 2018. It included 756 respondents over the age of 18 (with 80% of respondents aged 25-64) and a nationally representative sample balanced on age, gender and region. Ninety-one percent were employed as permanent employees at the time of the survey, and the remaining nine percent were contractors or freelancers.

About Randstad
Randstad North America, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Randstad N.V., a €23.3 billion global provider of flexible work and human resources services. As a trusted human partner in the technology-driven world of talent, we combine the expertise and passion of our employees with some of the most innovative HR technologies on the market today to advance the careers and business success of our candidates and clients.

Randstad's North American operations comprise 5,700+ associates and a deployed workforce of more than 100,000 in the U.S. and Canada. In addition to staffing and recruitment, Randstad offers outsourcing, consulting and workforce management solutions for generalist and specialist disciplines, including technology, engineering, finance and accounting, clinical and non-clinical healthcare, human resources, legal, life sciences, manufacturing and logistics, office and administration and sales and marketing. Global concepts available to North American client companies include RPO, MSP, integrated talent solutions, payrolling and independent contractor management and career transition services. Learn more at or