Survey: About 25% of American Workers Don’t Receive Health Insurance or Other Benefits

Survey: About 25% of American Workers Don’t Receive Health Insurance or Other Benefits

Roughly 25% of full-time workers in America don’t reap any benefits like health insurance, retirement savings plans, or paid vacation where they work, a new survey by Clutch shows. The data is startling as it suggests employers risk not hiring top talent because they don’t offer the perks.

The survey indicated 55% of employees report that health insurance is the most important benefit when for their job satisfaction. And paid vacation (18%), overtime pay (11%), and retirement funding plans (10%) are also top priorities to workers’ satisfaction.

Clutch’s 2018 HR and Benefits Survey included 507 employees in the U.S. working full-time. Clutch is a Washington, D.C.-based ratings and review firm. The data is applicable to small businesses and their employees because 36% of the people surveyed work for a company with 50 employees or fewer, says Elizabeth Ballou, a content creator and marketer at Clutch.

U.S. businesses with 50 or more full-time employees must provide health insurance, according to the Affordable Care Act. Yet, businesses with fewer than 50 employees are not legally required to offer insurance, explaining why 38% of full-time employees do not receive health insurance through their job.

Many black-owned businesses have fewer than 50 employees, including several that are on the 2017 Top BE 100s list.  Of course, health insurance is a big deal for those seeking jobs. One reason perhaps is because medical bills and treatment are so costly. An average visit to the emergency room runs over $1,200, research from the National Institutes of Health shows.

Other survey findings show age may determine what benefits are most important. For instance, just 44% of millennials (ages 18–34) cite health insurance as the most important benefit they receive, but 62% of Generation X and baby boomers say it’s most crucial.

Some 52% of employees who aren’t satisfied with their benefits want more of a benefit they already have, and 14% want different benefits altogether. Of perks provided, paid vacation time (65%) and health insurance (62%) are the most commonly offered benefits.

At the same time, Clutch suggested why employers should consider offering employees health insurance and other benefits. A competitive benefits package helps firms attract top talent; offers existing workers a better quality of life; and creates mutually beneficial relationships with workers.

People evaluating job offers focus heavily on the benefits an employer offers. Aflac’s annual employee findings survey revealed that 60% of employees would take a job with lower pay but better benefits.

Yet, offering benefits that their workers want, including health insurance or paid overtime, is an ongoing challenge for employers. That is particularly true for small businesses, which often don’t have the financial resources or capacity to offer coverage like larger companies.

Still, there are several options businesses of any size can consider to offer employee benefits:

– Voluntary benefits, including health and disability insurance, are offered by an employer but paid partly or entirely by workers from their paychecks. This option allows businesses to offer coverage without taking on substantial financial strain.

– Partner with an insurance broker or a professional employer organization (PEO) to offer health insurance. Be sure to ask the broker or PEO the pros and cons of the coverage.

Childcare benefits for workers with dependents, particularly women. Many businesses don’t offer this coverage, but perhaps should. Some 23% of women would take daycare services into consideration when choosing a job, and 24% feel that way about paid maternity leave, a study by content marketing agency Fractl shows.

– Be aware there are many other types of employee benefits available beyond health insurance. They can include everything from 401(k) retirement plans to dental and vision insurance.