The larger an employer, the more likely they are to value financial advice concerning employee benefits, according to a MassMutual survey.
Thirty-nine percent of the employers surveyed who do not rely on guidance from an advisor say they would consider help with benefits like retirement and insurance plans “extremely” or “very” valuable, according to the 2016 MassMutual Benefits Advice Study.
Fifty-nine percent of the respondents not currently receiving advice on their benefit plans said that professional guidance would be at least “somewhat helpful.”
The study, conducted in August and September, looked at 565 U.S. employers with between 25 and 1,000 employees.
“Employers increasingly are looking for help from financial advisors with voluntary benefits as their employees’ personal financial needs become more complex,” Tom Foster, spokesperson and practice management leader for MassMutual’s retirement plan services, said in a released statement.
Employers who receive professional advice regarding their voluntary benefit plans generally give their advisors high marks. More than half of these firms, 53 percent, said the advice they receive is “excellent” or “very good,” while 77 percent rated the advice as “good” or better, according to the survey.
Employers working with an advisor are more likely to promote employee wellness and benefits utilization, according to the survey. While 49 percent of employers who do not use an advisor reported encouraging their employees to take advantage of retirement and other benefit plans, that number climbs to 61 percent among companies who rely on an advisor.
Similarly, while 33 percent of the respondents who do not use an advisor reported encouraging financial wellness for their employees, 48 percent of firms that use an advisor do so.
Among firms not working with an advisor for their benefit plans, larger companies are more likely to value professional advice, according to the study. While 55 percent, of firms with over 1,000 employees characterized financial advice as “extremely” or “very” valuable, one-in-three employers with 25 or fewer employees responded the same.
The percentage of companies who consider financial advice on employee benefits to be at least “somewhat” valuable increases from 75 percent for firms with 25 or fewer employees to 80 percent for those with 1,000 or more.