Weigh up all the pros and cons of technology

Debbie Lovewell-Tuck

Love it or loathe it, there’s no getting away from the fact that technology has made many aspects of our lives much easier. Everyday tasks can now be carried out at a touch of a button wherever we are and it has never been easier to keep in contact with people.

Yet, conversely, the very things that are purported to make life easier, are also those that can serve as a hindrance, in some cases bringing greater stress to day-to-day life.

For example, while employees may value the flexibility technology affords to work where and when suits them, many also find that they feel under pressure to always be switched on. Unless employees have the self discipline required to switch off their devices or are able to ignore the ‘ping’ of new email arriving in their inbox, the result will see them working longer and longer hours.

So, how much exposure to technology is too much? What can, or even should, employers do to help employees get the balance right? Is there such a thing as too much exposure or reliance on technology in today’s world, leaving employees’ feeling overwhelmed? Read more in Getting the balance right in a technology-dominated world.

Last month I celebrated my 13th anniversary with Employee Benefits. One thing I’ve certainly learnt in my time here is that this is an industry that is constantly evolving. Many benefits packages today look very different from those I wrote about when I first joined the magazine.

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Again, in many cases, technological developments are driving this evolution. Scientific and medical advances are a case in point. In the United States, for example, some employers now offer genetic testing for conditions, including cancer and cardiac risk, within their benefits packages. A handful of employers in the UK have followed suit and, by all accounts, this looks set to be a growing market in the coming years.

Staying on top of the future trends and looking ahead at what will continue to motivate and engage employees is a key objective for almost every benefits strategy. Next month’s Employee Benefits Connect, which takes place on 9 March at the Lancaster London, features a wide range of expert speakers who will share their insights and predictions. I look forward to seeing many of you there.