By Daniel Hunter

New research from Group Risk Development (GRiD), the trade body for the group risk industry, has found that over half of employers (52%) would support an initiative to auto-enrol employees into Group Risk protection products. A further two in five (38%) suggested they would currently consider implementing these products alongside pension auto-enrolment.

Encouragingly, sentiment around auto-enrolment is positive amongst employers as a quarter (24%) have increased (or will increase) their spend on the employee benefit package in line with the introduction of pension auto-enrolment. Furthermore, two in five employers (40%) said pension auto-enrolment has had a positive impact on their business stating it has encouraged employee loyalty as well encouraging employees to take an active interest in their finances.

With employers upping their spend on the employee benefits package, businesses continue to act positively around auto-enrolment with a third (32%) suggesting they would consider more flexible working initiatives to improve the benefits package they provide for their staff. A further one in five (20%) would include a separate health and wellness programme.

Moreover, when asked whether they would be encouraged to offer Group Risk protection products to their staff if Government were to incentivise them to do so, nearly two thirds of employers (62%) said that they would.

Katharine Moxham, spokesperson for Group Risk Development (GRiD), commented: “I am heartened to see that employers are broadly positive about pension auto-enrolment and are receptive to the potential for extending auto-enrolment into other areas of the benefits package.

“With employers upping their spend on employee benefits, it is encouraging to see that they are still looking to further improve their offering by introducing Group Risk protection products, flexible working initiatives and health and wellness programmes.

“Businesses are coming to recognise that they are the ones to facilitate greater personal financial responsibility and resilience prior to retirement as well as afterwards and Group Risk protection benefits have a major role to play in ensuring that the UK workforce is adequately protected from the financial devastation that death or disability can bring.”

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