What’s the Most Important Benefit You Can Offer? It Depends

HR team working on their benefits strategy

If you’re like most HR people, every day you read stories about “The One Thing” research says employees value most.

A partial list:

Career development


Child care


Education debt

Elder care

Parental leave

Retirement support

School-age care

College debt repayment


Free degrees

So which one is it? 


Priority is in the eye of the beholder. And right now, with multiple generations with multiple priorities sharing a very complicated workplace, any one of the above list could take the top spot – depending on who you’re talking to. Millennials (35% of the workforce) are managing their parenting years. Boomers (25%) and the silent generation (2%) are thinking about retirement. Gen X (33%) is managing college kids and parents. Gen Z (5%) is thinking about building burgeoning careers. 

The goal is to reach every one without leaning so far in any one direction that you alienate another. 

The equally important thing is how the life-stages approach affects more than just employees – but the life-stage of your organization. So today’s Millennials who successfully work and parent and become leaders attract tomorrow’s Gen Zs by showing them how it’s done, and what’s possible. 

Boomers are likely thinking about dialing back without completing stepping out. Gen X and Millennials can use dependent care. Young Gen Z are looking for future-focused jobs. . Everybody’s got a different priority. Your workforce isn’t just one thing. Your benefits platform can’t be either.

[Webinar] In-Person, Hybrid or Remote: 3 Viewpoints on How Employee Benefits Are Changing

Employee benefits changing webinar graphic

Which employee benefits matter most now, what programs are employers putting in place, and how you can communicate your benefits strategy? We're covering that — and more — on 9/14.

Save your seat!

Bright Horizons
About the Author
Bright Horizons
Bright Horizons
In 1986, our founders saw that child care was an enormous obstacle for working parents. On-site centers became one way we responded to help employees – and organizations -- work better. Today we offer child care, elder care, and help for education and careers -- tools used by more than 1,000 of the world’s top employers and that power many of the world's best brands
HR team working on their benefits strategy

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