Dreams vs Reality in Employee Benefits Management
Understanding C-level perspectives towards employee benefits and the need for specialists in a complex environment
Within the head offices of many organisations, employee benefits (EB) come as a concern to a variety of C-level decision makers. The responsibility of ensuring suitable employee benefits for an organisation’s workforce is linked closely to a manager’s capacity to meet specific targets.
However, to meet those targets, companies require the ideal employee benefits scenario – the ‘dream.’ As a result of operational limitations, the ‘dream’ EB scenario is often far removed from the reality that many organisations and stakeholders face.
The complexity involved in employee benefits indicates why many organisations turn to external specialists for support.
The ‘dream’ employee benefits scenario is different across all branches at C-level. Understanding the perspective of both dream and reality for each department is important, so organisations can achieve an optimal outcome and gain control over EB management.
How can such C-level dream and reality perspectives be interpreted?
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO):
Dream – “Based on statistics and reporting, I know that our employee benefits are strictly adhered to in every country, following the ancillary measures and corporate social responsibility policy.”
Reality – “Neither my CFO nor CHRO can prove it”
The Chief Financial Officer (CFO):
Dream – “I can understand the real costs associated with global employee benefits at both international and national levels.”
Reality – “I have a collection of black boxes of varying sizes. I can’t understand if we are financing the right measures or why we are financing certain measures. I have no control.”
The Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO):
Dream – “I can understand the full situation regarding costs, benefits and efficiency, at both international and national levels. I can manage this based on factual reports.”
Reality – “I have no clear view of employee benefits in each country and no control over EB set up. What are we providing? What is the cost? What is the reason?”
Controller & Risk Manager:
Dream – “I get all necessary information, structured according to my needs, to implement proper risk management concerning corporate risk transfer. This includes costs, benefits, compliance, governance etc.”
Reality – “I do not have that.”
Assessing the perspectives of dream vs reality across C-level stakeholders, it is clear that there is a lack of information and control in employee benefits management.
How can the gap between the ‘dream’ and the reality be minimized?
The solution can be found in the support and expertise provided by employee benefits specialists. This support is imperative in placing the control of EB organisation back into the hands of C-level management.
It is through the support of such specialists that the ‘dream’ can become a reality for organisations all around the world.
This brief article is the first in a series of six contributions brought to you by ASN, Advisory Services Network.
ASN, Advisory Services Network AG, based in Zürich, focuses on driving better management through its global network of international insurance experts, supporting organisations of all sizes.
ASN provides trusted advice and services to management at head office level, as well as local subsidiaries, establishing the levels of control and information access required to reach that ‘dream’ EB scenario.
Contact ASN for an Employee Benefits Consultation