Get access to the exclusive HR Resources you need to succeed in 2018!
SHRM board member David Windley discusses how unconscious bias can derail workplace diversity efforts.
Is your employee handbook keeping up with the changing world of work? With SHRM's Employee Handbook Builder get peace of mind that your handbook is up-to-date.
Build competencies, establish credibility and advance your career—while earning PDCs—at SHRM Seminars in 12 cities across the U.S. this spring.
#SHRM18 will expand your perspective – on your organization, on your career, and on the way you approach HR. Join us in Chicago June 17-20, 2018
Despite strained resources, corporations are devising global benefit strategies
Members may download one copy of our sample forms and templates for your personal use within your organization. Please note that all such forms and policies should be reviewed by your legal counsel for compliance with applicable law, and should be modified to suit your organization’s culture, industry, and practices. Neither members nor non-members may reproduce such samples in any other way (e.g., to republish in a book or use for a commercial purpose) without SHRM’s permission. To request permission for specific items, click on the “reuse permissions” button on the page where you find the item.
HR benefit directors at multinational companies have complaints that sound similar to those of benefits managers at organizations of any size: They say they’re stymied by strained resources and the need to deal with immediate rather than long-term matters.
But despite these hurdles, corporate benefit leaders are putting into place global policies that add strategic value to their organizations.
Current and Emerging Global Benefit Themes: Priorities for 2016, a report from consultancy Willis Towers Watson, draws on responses from benefit directors at 316 multinational companies. Among the findings, 58 percent of benefit leaders felt their day-to-day activities limit their ability to make strategic contributions to their company’s global employee benefit program. Meanwhile, 75 percent believe that with added resources or improved procedures, their benefit programs could be more strategic and efficient across four staple foundations:
“It’s clear the purse strings are not getting any looser within multinational companies, yet somehow global benefit directors are finding a way to continue the development of their programs,” said Brian Makuck, North America intellectual capital and integration leader at Willis Towers Watson in Atlanta. “Multinationals that make resource management a priority may be better equipped to balance the realities of day-to-day management with long-term essential business needs.”
As an example of how benefit directors can add strategic value, Makuck pointed to HR’s role in integrating employee benefits and rewards following mergers and acquisitions, and in developing a medium- to long-term road map for corporate pensions.
“Financial risks associated with defined benefit liabilities are a major exposure, so identifying longevity risks and appropriately managing them is important,” said Makuck. In addition, “benefits must be financially accountable on a global, or at least regional, level to gain control of costs.”
Despite the difficulties, the research suggests there is cause for some optimism over how multinationals are developing their approaches to global benefits:
In another sign of progress, almost half (47 percent) of global benefit directors say they are into the later stages of developing global benefit strategies—such as by creating a global center of expertise to integrate and derive better value from benefit investments worldwide—an increase of 12 percentage points from two years ago.
Stephen Miller, CEBS, is an online editor/manager for SHRM.
Follow me on Twitter.
Related SHRM Articles
You have successfully saved this page as a bookmark.
Please confirm that you want to proceed with deleting bookmark.
You have successfully removed bookmark.
Please log in as a SHRM member before saving bookmarks.
Please sign in as a SHRM member before saving bookmarks.
Please purchase a SHRM membership before saving bookmarks.
An error has occurred
Recommended for you
Apply by March 23
SHRM’s HR Vendor Directory contains over 3,200 companies