LONDON, September 29, 2022--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Employees are seeking security through benefits such as health insurance and pensions in a bid to shore up their future in the face of a fast-changing economic climate. That’s according to the latest Bupa Wellbeing Index – a landmark survey conducted amongst 8,000 UK adults revealing the state of the nation’s health.
Research found that health insurance ranked in the top three most sought-after benefits for a third (39%) of employees. This was behind only flexible working (53%) and a company pension scheme (46%). The other core benefits employees prioritised were employee discounts (36%) and free lunches (25%), showing that as belts are tightened with the cost-of-living crisis, people are relying on their employers to support them in navigating economic uncertainty.
As the war for talent continues, benefits play a significant role in staff attraction and retention. More than two-fifths of employees (42%) said they would be more likely to stay in their current role if it offered good health and wellbeing benefits, while 28% say they would feel more valued if their employer offered more benefits to ease their cost-of-living.
Almost a fifth (19%) said that health insurance through work is a priority benefit for them as a result of financial pressures.
Bupa UK Insurance data indicates that businesses are responding to this with the demand for health and wellbeing benefits at an all-time high. Bupa has seen significant growth in customers numbers with over 150,000 new customers across private medical insurance, health trusts, dental and cash plan so far during 2022.
Alex Perry, CEO of Bupa UK Insurance, commented: "In challenging economic times, benefits like health insurance are really valued by employees. Knowing that high-quality healthcare is there when it’s needed gives employees important reassurance. Setting out strong commitments to their employee wellbeing will help UK businesses attract and retain the brightest and best. Our data shows that looking after employees over the long-term by prioritising their health, and that of their families, will always win out."
The Bupa Wellbeing Index data also shows employees are making good use of their health insurance; 42% of those with health and wellbeing benefits have used them in the last 12 months. But sadly, the ‘long-tail’ mental health impact of the pandemic is still being felt across generations, possibly exacerbated by the acute stresses of economic uncertainty.
Mental health conditions such as anxiety (11%) and depression (9%) were the most commonly addressed, in addition to Covid-19 (8%), along with musculoskeletal issues such as back or joint pain (6%). Overall, Bupa has seen claims for mental health conditions increase by 40% between 2019 – 2021.
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