Earlier this week, I attended a debate on what the future holds for employee benefits.
Throughout the conversation, a recurring theme was how what employees are looking for from their employers is changing. As a result, many employers are now considering what they can offer to support their staff with everyday necessities such as housing and how to deal with the rising cost of living.
Some ideas include:
- On-site mortgage advice
- Subsidised rent
- Education assistance loans.
For younger and lower-paid staff, in particular, such support will be invaluable.
Some employers have already put such plans into action. Just last month, Deloitte launched an initiative to help graduate staff find suitable accommodation in London, enabling them to take the first two weeks rent-free, as well as providing free broadband.
Yet, just a few years ago, many employers would not have expected to take on the burden of such costs for their staff.
Their increased interest in doing so, however, shows just how important listening to employees’ wants and expectations has become. And, if this continues, we could see such support become even more common.
Davidson Asset Management’s research report Employee benefits: 2035, which was launched alongside the above debate, found that when asked what benefits they would like to receive, which are not currently widely offered, employees ranked mortgage advice, support with family planning and reimbursement for degrees in their top five options.
So, are we seeing the return of paternalism?
We’re opening a book on how long it will be until the first organisation develops a new Bourneville-style development to provide its workforce with affordable housing.