While three-quarters (74 per cent) of U.S. companies have increased their commitment to well-being programs in the last two years, just 50 per cent of employees say they’ve seen an increase in support, according to a new survey by Buck, a subsidiary of Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.

The survey, which polled more than 250 U.S. employers and nearly 700 employees, found the top reasons cited for increasing well-being investments were talent attraction and retention (66 per cent), followed by increased job satisfaction (65 per cent) and support for mental health (59 per cent).

A majority (86 per cent) of employers agreed voluntary benefits programs are key to their well-being strategy, while a similar percentage (80 per cent) of employees said they want to talk to someone about their benefits and 55 per cent want a better understanding of their benefits.

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Few employee respondents ranked themselves as fully ‘healthy,’ with a fifth reporting worsening mental, physical and financial health. Notably, employees ranked their financial well-being the lowest (66 per cent) and nearly all (92 per cent) said they wanted more financial wellness resources. More than half (56 per cent) said inflation and/or rising costs will delay or impact their ability to obtain health care in the coming year.

A quarter of employees reported they aren’t satisfied with their jobs or aren’t able to be productive. Nearly two-thirds (63 per cent) said they’d change their jobs for better benefits and 46 per cent said they’re actively considering a job change in 2024, up from 35 per cent in 2022. Younger workers were significantly more likely to pursue a job change, including half (53 per cent) of generation Z employees.

“The data clearly shows that voluntary benefits can play a key role in workforce retention, especially in a market where big pay bumps are cooling,” said Ruth Hunt, a principal at Arthur J Gallagher & Co. and co-author of the report, in a press release. “Organizations likely need to revisit their communication strategies to enhance employee education and increase use of benefits to drive desired outcomes and results.”

Read: 57% of employees considering quitting jobs for roles with more well-being support: survey