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Auto-enrolment set to spur wider benefit investment says Grid

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The imminent introduction of auto-enrolment looks set to trigger increased investment in employee benefits according to research from Group Risk Development.

More than two in five employers, 41 per cent of those questioned in the research, claimed to be looking to increase the value of their benefits package during 2012.
Grid says if this increased investment does materialise, it would be in sharp contrast to recent trends. Just 16 per cent of employers decided to add to the value of their benefits package over the past 12 months.
Currently, the average annual cost of the employee benefit package, excluding pension, is 2.19 per cent of payroll but the study suggests that employers may place greater emphasis on benefit provision in view of the current public sector service squeeze. 19 per cent of employers questioned said they were prepared to work with staff to ensure they were properly provided for in the face of public service cuts. A further 12 per cent said they would be more likely to increase benefits in light of Government policy.
Among companies who don’t currently offer group protection benefits, 53 per cent would consider introducing group life insurance, 68 per cent would think about introducing group income protection and 78 per cent would consider initiating group critical illness alongside auto-enrolment.
Katharine Moxham, spokesperson for Grid says: “Employers will currently be facing the introduction of auto-enrolment with varying degrees of confidence or trepidation. It is very positive to see that employers are considering further investment in their benefits package alongside auto-enrolment and specifically that they are acknowledging the major role protection benefits can play in managing absence and fostering employee wellbeing.”

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