Joe Glavina: “Can I ask you about the frequency of reviewing the reward package because the research indicates half of employers only review once a year. In the current circumstances there is a lot to be said for more regular reviews.”
Lynette Jacobs: “Yes Joe I agree. Often companies do only think about looking at these things once a year but life, as we all know, is very fluid at the moment, things are changing the whole time. They're changing when in respect to COVID. Do we wear masks, do not wear masks? Equally, with your employees, now is the time to sort of pick up the pace at which you are doing those reviews. What may have worked for your company in terms of your remuneration strategy six months ago, three months ago, last week, may well no longer be what you need to retain and also attract new employees to your company. So, I very much agree with that report that suggests that you should be looking more often. Another thing that you can think about doing is having employee surveys. So, check with the employees that the mix of rewards that you're making available to your employees is what they're looking for. You don't want them to be lured away by other employers and you're left sitting there because you haven't given thought to it.”
Joe Glavina: “Can I ask you about benchmarking? This article is saying it’s essential that organisations are able to confidently benchmark their offering and remain competitive in the market. How important is that?”
Lynette Jacobs: “You need to know what your competitors are offering to make sure that you are offering a similar package and, if you're not offering a similar package, perhaps if you're a smaller company, or times have been harder for you and you're not able to offer salary increases, that will give you the opportunity to think well, we need to do something else and perhaps that's your opportunity to think, well, let's put in a shared plan. That's a good way of building up brand identity, it can make employees feel loved, it offers inclusivity and also, importantly, for some types of share plans, it can give a savings opportunity to your employees which they may well welcome, and research has shown that, in many cases, the share plans that involve savings are the only opportunities that employees have for saving.”
Joe Glavina: “Final question Lynette. What’s your message to HR professionals listening to this?”
Lynette Jacobs: “You need to think about your reward strategy as a whole, it's a good opportunity to review it, think about the best strategies that you have to hold on to your staff to make sure that they're not lured away. I think it's worthy to note that in May this year, there was a study produced by the Social Market Foundation and that showed that for employees who own shares in their employer’s company or group, there is a better relationship between the company and the employees. The company itself has a better performance, and also the employees have a high level of financial worth and putting in a share plan, making awards under a plan, is a very good opportunity to give that tangible benefit to set up that relationship between you and your employees. Just a final couple of points. If you are putting in a new share plan, or you're making awards under a share plan that you already have, or you then put in, do remember that communication once you've made that award is so important. It’s going to lose all the benefit that you've put the hard work in for, and perhaps financial cost, if you don't then continue to use that, reminding them of that and retaining that link. Finally, on communication itself, don’t forget outside of any strategies, and putting in share plans, the importance of checking in with your employees regularly. So, either if they're coming back into the office now, regular face to face meetings, just checking how people are, their wellbeing, and if they're still working from home then setting up a Teams call, or whatever, or even just over the phone in the old traditional way, just to speak to them and check how they are. That goes a long way to preventing those resignations.”
If your business has a global presence, then you may be interested in our programme ‘International share plans ‘bring people together’ in Covid times’ where Lynette talks about the merits of international share plans and HR’s role. That programme is available now for viewing from the Outlaw website, along with all the latest developments.