No benefit is too small to be included in a TRS, so enhanced maternity or paternity leave and employee assistance programmes could be included, for example.
TRS providers can produce bespoke statements for employers, and offer them creative documentation to communicate information to staff. Helping employees to understand all the things their employer is doing for them can also boost retention.
However, the number of employers using TRS is in decline, according to research by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD). Its Reward management 2013 survey, published in May 2013, found that although 30% of the 444 respondents forecast an increase in benefits spend, just 15% of them provided TRS, compared with 17.8% the year before.
The same survey also found just 8.6% of employers were planning to introduce a TRS in 2013, which could be a result of budget cuts or employers not considering them to be essential.
TRSs often used to be four- or five-page documents that were posted to staff, but these are now available as a short paper document or in electronic format.
Employers are using a range of communication methods to engage staff, but the latest trend in the market is to offer employees access to their TRS via their smartphone.
Smartphone access enables staff to take away as little or as much information from their TRS as they require, with real-time information providing an up-to-date value for their benefits.
Employers without smartphone-enabled TRS should carefully consider when to communicate statements to their employees. The beginning of the year, when staff are budgeting for the year ahead, can be a good time to remind them how much their employer is investing in them and the benefits they receive.
TRS costs remain competitive. Simple statements can range from £2 to £7 per employee per year, while more sophisticated online formats can cost as much £100 per employee per year.
Prices vary according to the size of an organisation and the complexity of its needs.
What is a total reward statement?
It is a document outlining the full benefits package an employee receives, including salary, pension and shares. It can also include data about non-financial benefits, such as health and wellbeing and workplace training.
Where can employers get more information?
See Employee Benefits’ website: bit.ly/1dDeU92
Who are the main providers?
Most reward consultants and benefits providers offer a TRS service, including: Aon Hewitt, Benefex, Buck Consultants, Ceridian, Fair Care, Grass Roots, Hay Group, Jelf Group, Edenred, Mercer Marsh Benefits, Motivano, NorthgateArinso, Personal Group, Reward Gateway (formerly Asperity Employee Benefits), Staffcare, Strait Logics, Thomsons Online Benefits and Vebnet.
- 15% of employers provided total reward statements for their employees in 2013 (CIPD Reward management survey 2013).
- 29% of employers offered total reward statements to communicate benefits to employees in 2012 (Employee Benefits/Alexander Forbes benefits research 2012, published in May 2012).