There’s a lack of communication in the U.S. workplace when it comes to benefits and compensation, which could make it more difficult for employees to successfully save for retirement, according to a survey.

The eighth annual Transamerica retirement survey found that employers continue to overlook the high value that employees place on retirement benefits compared to salary.

Fifty-six percent of employers believed employees would choose a higher salary over excellent retirement benefits, while only 34% of employees agreed with that statement.

“For as long as we’ve been conducting our retirement survey, we’ve seen a great divide between employees and employers on retirement issues,” says Catherine Collinson, retirement and market trends expert for the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies.

Very little dialogue between employers and employees on retirement issues may be fueling this gap: only 22% have spoken to their supervisor or HR department about their retirement benefits in the last 12 months.

Coincidentally, 77% of employers believe their employees would prefer not to think about retirement until they near retirement age, while 73% of employees disagreed with this statement.

“As more employees count on employer-sponsored plans as their primary source of retirement income,” she says, “it’s crucial that employers and employees communicate when making decisions about their retirement plan.”

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