Phil Sproston: How can total reward strategies help create top employers?

Phil Sproston

Total reward strategies have come to be highly effective weapons for many top employers in the UK. To understand why, it is important to break down the words themselves.

Organisations are becoming increasingly broad in their perspective regarding what reward really means, and so the word ‘total’ is key. While ‘reward’ used to refer to¬†pay and core benefits, today it covers many other things, such as personalised career development and¬†flexible working options. Meanwhile, ‘strategy’ is essential, as it is only when total reward is put together with clear, long-term objectives for recruitment, retention and engagement that organisations can truly move forward.

So, how is this achieved? Analysis of the Top Employers Institute’s 2018 data, published in January 2018, shows that more than 93% of certified top employers already have clear objectives for their compensation and benefits policies. Also, nearly half (45%) create a total reward statement¬†on an annual basis.¬†These employers evidently know that a total reward strategy, presented in a comprehensive way, has the clear and powerful potential to enhance their reputation.

Transparency has become an enabler for this increasingly broad approach. The Top Employers Institute’s research found that more than two-thirds (67%) of top employers already provide employees with on-demand or real-time insight into their personal compensation and benefits information, via a self-service portal.

In addition, many staff have, in the past, been unaware of the substantial costs to their employer of benefits such as pensions. So, transparency leads to education; it highlights a value that goes beyond the basics of remuneration, adding to an image of the wider benefits of working for an organisation.

An effective total reward strategy, allied with a clear desire to communicate the value of the employment package, is a key driver for those organisations seeking to become employers of choice.

Phil Sproston is UK country manager at the Top Employers Institute

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