How to use technology to make your reward and benefits offering more compelling

Nearly two-thirds (63 per cent) of employers still have the desire to improve engagement with their reward and benefits offering – Employee Benefits (2018). Even now we still struggle to weave a compelling offering to our employees. Yet, there is an underutilised tool in all of our belts: technology.

How to use technology to make your reward and benefits offering more compelling

We’ve seen great advancements in reward and benefits technology in the last few years, but are we really making the most of it? I’ll be looking at three ways in which you can use your technology to create a more compelling reward and benefits offering.

1. Provide a great user experience

A user journey has the potential to ‘make or break’ your employees’ experience when it comes to their benefits. User experience is usually the first way of ensuring a compelling reward and benefit offering. A great example of this, which I discovered last week, is an app in which I could look up train journey times, buy the ticket with my fingerprint and store it in my phone’s ‘wallet’. All completed in less than a minute, while I was walking down my driveway. I was pleasantly impressed to say the least.   

Your benefits technology should also be able to impress and engage employees. By providing an easily accessible platform for your people to access their benefits, employees can be empowered to make choices when it is most suitable for them. This may be sat at their desk or sat on the sofa with their family. A mobile accessible platform removes restrictions and places the power in your employees’ hands; so that they can make the choices that suit them, when it suits them.

A platform which is engaging both visually and technically reduces the barriers to success. Simple processes (such as benefit selection) that are intuitive and quick ensure your employees have an easy and simple way to engage with your reward and benefits programmes, without the risk of losing interest or becoming frustrated.

What to look for

Technology today can easily be configured to look like your brand, not anybody else’s. Also look for a technology which does not bombard your people with too much detail at the outset, but provides easy access to information and processes which can be completed in a minute or two. Clear next steps/calls to action and well laid out pages are often the calling cards to a great user design. So you can say goodbye to high drop off rates.

2. Keep clear lines of communication

Speaking to some of my team, it’s clear to see that their engagement levels are clearly based on their knowledge of which benefits are available to them, and how to access them. One team member even commented on her frustration at not knowing that a previous company would contribute towards the cost of eye checks and even the cost of their glasses. They were only made aware of this when it was too late.

Modern employee benefits technology has the power to ensure that all employees have the right information, at the right time. By sending targeted communications, from new lifestyle windows specific to individual employees, right through to their exact benefit selections, can help create a more compelling programme for your people. By providing these insightful nudges and reminders of what is available, your people can fully engaged with their offering. When your people understand the true value of what is on offer, they will be compelled to make the very best of it.

What to look for

Modern technology does not need extensive work to create triggered, targeted communications. The technology should be able to handle this for you with minimal input and send emails whenever necessary, you won’t need to be sat behind your computer at all hours of the day. A communications centre should be able to handle all communications sending on your behalf. You just need to add your company’s own ‘personal touch’.

3. Offer truly tailored experiences

Generic just doesn’t cut it anymore. We live in a world of hyper personalisation. From our supermarkets reminding us of any forgotten, frequently bought items; through to the adverts we see online and our Spotify music recommendations. We’ve naturally come to expect it from technology in our personal lives. Now we’re seeing these tailored experiences transition into our reward and benefits offerings. Advancements in benefits technology are already impacting our strategies, the key to which, is often in the data the technology holds.

Utilising in application analytics is empowering reward and benefits professionals. We now have the power to define and tailor our benefits strategies to fit our employees’ lifestyles and expectations. You can now see which benefits your employees are actually using, because sometimes the gym membership card gets left in the bottom of the gym bag. Tracking employee uptake and engagement on the platform will provide a wonderful ‘colour-by-numbers’ for you to curate the perfect blend of reward and recognition for your people in and out of the workplace.

Total Reward Statements (TRS) offer a more compelling way for your people to understand their personalised packages in real time. Any choices they make can be clearly displayed in terms of value, impact on take home pay and contributions made by you, the employer.

What to look for

The right technology should allow you to track levels of employee engagement through your dashboard and set-up reports to truly understand your people, without any additional fees or long processing times. Your TRS should be interactive and automatic. There should be no need to ‘refresh at midnight’, or even provide this information on paper. The compelling story you’ve created should be instantly accessible.

Read more about personalisation and what questions to ask technology providers in our September REBA blog.


Technology has the power to engage us now, more so than ever, and benefits technology is no different. We have the power to create a compelling reward and benefits offering to our people in a more effective and efficient way than we ever have before. By utilising modern technologies to ensure a high quality and simple user journey, combined with targeted communications and a truly personal offering your reward and benefits programmes, can only go from strength to strength.

The author is Garry Nelson, commercial director at Zest.

This article was provided by Zest.

Zest is sponsoring REBA’s Innovation Day, taking place on 22 November at County Hall, London.

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