Review suppliers on a regular basis

Employers should review their benefits suppliers at least every two years, advised Paul Bissell, head of reward at Cable and Wireless Worldwide.

Speaking on day two of Employee Benefits Live, Bissell warned that organisations can get too comfortable when working with a supplier for a number of years, which could mean they are missing out on better deals.

“Comfort can breed cost,” said Bissell. “You can get really comfortable with suppliers for good reasons, but it should not stop you, every two or, at the maximum, three years, from doing a full review of who you are working with and what you are paying.”

Bissell advised that there are other areas where employers can save money or spend no money on benefits but still offer an attractive service to their employees. These include looking at salary sacrifice arrangements, seeking out suppliers offering voluntary benefit schemes on a free basis and offering share schemes. He added that employers should also look at the whole work environment to ensure it encourages employees to continue to work at the organisation and are engaged.

“Money isn’t everything,” he said. “You can actually waste money on your employees if you haven’t got the work environment right, you haven’t got managers living your values and behaving as you want them to be with your employees and if the general quality of the work and environment is rubbish you will not keep them.”