5 Common Workplace Benefits — and 3 That Are Dying Out

workplace benefits
Photo by Rawpixel.com / Shutterstock.com

For 20 years now, the nonprofit Employee Benefit Research Institute has surveyed employees about their benefits — delving into their understanding, satisfaction and confidence levels regarding their benefits.

Perhaps the most interesting part of the survey, though — at least to workers — is simply how many companies offer various benefits are these days. You can use such information as a barometer against which to evaluate the benefits your current or future employers offer.

For EBRI’s latest annual Health and Workplace Benefits Survey, around 1,500 American workers, against 21 to 64, were polled.

The prevalence of workplace benefits

According to the latest survey, five benefits have become more common in recent years. They are:

  1. Health insurance: 67 percent of employees report that their employers offered this benefit in 2017 (up from 63 percent in 2013)
  2. Dental insurance: 59 percent (up from 54 percent)
  3. Retirement savings plan: 57 percent (up from 53 percent)
  4. Life insurance: 50 percent (up from 47 percent)
  5. Vision insurance: 49 percent (up from 44 percent)

Two other benefits — a health savings account (which 22 percent of employers offered in 2017) and accident insurance (15 percent) — have become more common since 2015. EBRI has not been tracking these benefits as long as others, though, so the organization does not have 2013 data on them.

Three benefits have become less common in recent years. They are:

  1. Traditional pension: 26 percent of employees report their employers offered this benefit in 2017 (down from 29 percent in 2013)
  2. Long-term disability: 29 percent (down from 32 percent)
  3. Short-term disability: 36 percent (down from 39 percent)

Interestingly, though, traditional pension rates have risen a bit since 2015 — 26 percent of companies offer such plans now compared with 22 percent of companies in 2015.

This year, EBRI also looked at two other benefits, paid leave and student loan assistance. Their prevalence is:

  • Paid vacation time: 84 percent of employees report their employers offered this benefit in 2017
  • Paid sick leave: 71 percent
  • Paid maternity leave: 45 percent
  • Paid paternity leave: 26 percent
  • Student-loan-debt relief/repayment assistance: 13 percent

Understanding workplace benefits

Many employees have a lackluster understanding of their job benefits, EBRI found.

Only 52 percent of employees say they understand their health benefits “extremely well” or “very well.” The rest say they understand them “somewhat well,” “not too well” or “not at all well.”

The numbers are worse for nonhealth benefits, with only 43 percent of employees saying they understand them “extremely well” or “very well.”

This could stem from the fact that less than half of employees say their employers offer education or advice about benefits, such as how health insurance works or how to invest money in a retirement plan.

Note that these numbers reflect what employees believe to be the case. If you feel your employer has not provided benefits information that you need or want, make sure you have asked for any available information. Failing that, ask the benefits company to provide you with or direct you to information.

What’s your take on the prevalence of job benefits today? Sound off below or over on our Facebook page.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
The 10 Worst Types of Tickets for Your Car Insurance Rate
The 10 Worst Types of Tickets for Your Car Insurance Rate

Some types of traffic violations can drive your car insurance rate more than 25% higher.

7 Reasons You Should Not Claim Social Security Early
7 Reasons You Should Not Claim Social Security Early

The sooner you claim your Social Security retirement benefits, the more you — and perhaps also your spouse — stand to lose. Here are the stakes.

This Pastime Can Keep Your Brain Sharp as You Age
This Pastime Can Keep Your Brain Sharp as You Age

It’s never too late to benefit from taking up this type of activity.

2-Minute Money Strategy: How Should I Invest My Retirement Savings?
2-Minute Money Strategy: How Should I Invest My Retirement Savings?

If retirement is on the horizon, you can’t afford to take too much risk, but you also need to make as much as possible. Here are your options.

13 Streaming TV Services That Cost $20 a Month — or Less
13 Streaming TV Services That Cost $20 a Month — or Less

Before shelling out for more expensive options, check out this diverse list.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco
7 Kirkland Signature Items to Avoid at Costco

Even if it seems you save a bundle buying Costco’s Kirkland Signature brand products, they may not be the bargain they appear to be.

How to Buy Gas At Costco Without a Membership
How to Buy Gas At Costco Without a Membership

The warehouse club often has some of the cheapest gas in town. Here’s how you can get it as a nonmember.

10 Things to Stop Buying If You Want a Clutter-Free Home
10 Things to Stop Buying If You Want a Clutter-Free Home

If you like to keep things simple, avoid these purchases.

A Simple Way to Silence Robocalls Today
A Simple Way to Silence Robocalls Today

A few steps can keep your phone from ringing when a spammer calls.

This Company Makes the Best Tires in America
This Company Makes the Best Tires in America

Driver satisfaction with tires is at an all-time high, but one brand stands out.

If You Find This Thrift Shopping, Buy It
If You Find This Thrift Shopping, Buy It

Vacuums from this brand can last a half-century, if not longer — and they’re hot on the resale market.

This Health Issue Can Hint at Dementia Years in Advance
This Health Issue Can Hint at Dementia Years in Advance

One type of pain is especially associated with cognitive decline.

Can I Switch to Spousal Social Security Benefits When My Ex Dies?
Can I Switch to Spousal Social Security Benefits When My Ex Dies?

Knowing when to claim can help you maximize benefits.

If You Find This Thrift Shopping, Buy It
If You Find This Thrift Shopping, Buy It

This iconic dinnerware is prized for everyday use as well as reselling for profit.

Medicare Will Not Cover These 6 Medical Costs
Medicare Will Not Cover These 6 Medical Costs

Don’t let these health care expenses catch you off guard in retirement.

8 Things You Should Always Buy on Amazon
8 Things You Should Always Buy on Amazon

The giant retailer shines when it comes to these things, from basics to hard-to-find specialty goods.

Beware This Hidden Ingredient in Rotisserie Chicken
Beware This Hidden Ingredient in Rotisserie Chicken

Something foul may lurk in those delicious, ready-to-eat birds.

5 Ways to Get Amazon Prime for Free
5 Ways to Get Amazon Prime for Free

Hesitant to drop $119 a year on an Amazon Prime membership? Here’s how to get it for free.

5 Ways to Fill Your Pantry With Free Food
5 Ways to Fill Your Pantry With Free Food

Anyone can take advantage of these resources.

5 States With the Worst Health Care for Retirees
5 States With the Worst Health Care for Retirees

All of these states are located in the same region of the nation.

6 Reasons You Should Stop Hiding Cash at Home
6 Reasons You Should Stop Hiding Cash at Home

Stashing money around the house is anything but harmless.

3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free
3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free

With a little ingenuity, you can cut Office costs to zero.

12 Deep Discounts Available on Amazon This Friday
12 Deep Discounts Available on Amazon This Friday

These items are steeply discounted — but the deals won’t last long.

7 Big Purchases You Should Never Make
7 Big Purchases You Should Never Make

Sometimes a big-ticket purchase is nothing more than a big waste of money.

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.