Although vaccination rates against COVID-19 are high in the world’s most developed countries, and many companies have begun welcoming employees back to the office, the impacts on mental health will take many years to restore.
With this is mind, organizations across the world understand the need for a robust global mental health strategy. Already we can see efforts being made with the introduction of hybrid working models to help support employee work-life balance. But are employers doing enough? Not according to employees.
Our recent study of more than 58,000 employees across Europe reveals that 32% of employees in Germany, 29% in France, 23% in the UK, 20% in Denmark and Sweden, and 12% in the Netherlands say they believe employers are not doing enough to support their mental health and well-being.
Meeting Your Employees’ Needs
With multiple generations working together, each with different needs depending on their life stage, could it be that employers are missing the mark by offering benefits that are not inclusive and do not meet the current needs of the individual? It’s very likely. Only 18% of UK employees, 17% in France, and 15% in Germany strongly agree that the benefits their employer offers them reflect the current situation.
When devising a global mental health strategy, it’s crucial that organizations consider what Gallup describes as the five essential elements of well-being: career, social, financial, community, and physical. For example, your organization’s well-being strategy could consist of financial wellness advice, pension contributions for a more secure future, insurances, gym or fitness club memberships, mental health services such as online therapy, social opportunities, and team activity challenges.
We Are All Individuals
When employees were asked what would make them more satisfied with their benefits, 48% in Sweden, 40% in France, 36% in the UK, 32% in Germany, 32% in Denmark, and 29% in the Netherlands said they wanted more individually tailored benefits.
Naturally, we all want to be treated as individuals. Therefore, employee benefits, pensions, and insurances should all be personalized based on the individual’s unique circumstances and eligibility. However, achieving this on a global scale presents numerous challenges.
For any global mental health benefits strategy to be effective, it needs to recognize the uniqueness and diversity of each country. Unfortunately, this is often easier said than done. As a result, many organizations are still creating strategies where their benefits and reward programs are rigid and impersonal.
A Global Solution
A flexible benefits model with a fixed budget for each employee is a robust solution that enables organizations the ability to create and manage an inclusive global mental health strategy that meets the needs of every employee, individually, demographically, and geographically. With this type of flexible benefits model, each employee is given a fixed budget from their employer to spend on a wide range mental health and well-being benefits pre-selected by the employer.
Using this kind of flexible benefits model globally enables organizations to offer the same type of benefits across the board, which are then localized in each country, including local suppliers.
Equally important is selecting a benefits platform provider with extensive knowledge of benefits administration in multiple territories, including the local tax regulations in each country. Additionally, it’s crucial that HR professionals can manage their global benefits in one place and see an overview of the costs and spending on benefits in each country.
Looking for more tips on how to build a global benefits strategy to improve employee mental health? Grab our tip-sheet.