A majority of business owners agree that 401(k) plans offer key benefits both for their business and their employees, but many struggle to communicate those benefits, according to a survey from Nationwide.

The research showed that 88% of business owners believe that 401(k) plans help to attract and recruit top talent; offer tax advantages for both businesses and employees (88%); and improve employee retention (86%). And 84% view it as a necessary benefit.

The survey, which included 400 U.S. business owners with 11 to 500 employees that offer 401(k)s, found that although nearly nine in 10 business owners report their retirement plan provider offers tools and resources to them to help encourage employees to participate, 53% still struggle with communicating the benefits and encouraging participation among their employees.

This number increases to 60% when looking at female business owners and 65% for younger business owners aged 18 to 34 years old, the survey said. Moreover, 68% of business owners acknowledged it's their responsibility to encourage employees to participate in a 401(k) offering.

The survey found that 40% of business owners estimate that more than 75% of their employees participate in their plan.

While 401(k) plans have become a standard retirement benefit, 45% of business owners surveyed indicated that the cost for providing the benefit is a challenge. Also, 37% cited administrative headaches and 27% cited a lack of knowledge around starting or maintaining a plan as hurdles in offering a 401(k) plan.

Still, 92% of business owners agreed that the benefits of offering a 401(k) plan to employees outweigh the challenges. Ninety-nine percent of those from 35 to 54 years old felt this way.

Three in 10 business owners aged 55 and older said they don't believe there are any challenges in offering a 401(k) plan, the report said.