I can pull a help wanted ad from just about anywhere geographically in Canada, doing any occupation and I am going to see the title “Benefits”. The salary is listed within a range and the benefits are normally listed in point form or use the terms like “competitive” and “comprehensive” combined with “total rewards” to entice potential candidates to apply.


Because benefits are considered an important part of the total compensation package offered by an organization to their potential and existing staff members.

A Chicken Crossing

In the same manner as if we were leading a group of trained individuals across an uncertain terrain and come across a raging whitewater river that needs crossing, we wouldn’t need to ask “why” do we need a bridge? We need a bridge to get to the other side. Simple as that.

Organizations need to offer a benefit plan to be competitive in the marketplace. Potential employees expect to have coverage and existing staff need comprehensive coverage to continue.

Gone are the days where benefits being offered was sporadic and confined to the large corporations. The majority of prime working age people and those entering the workforce now have grown up with benefits. Their parents had benefits. They are well used to depending upon having coverage as part of their day-to-day needs. It’s not a matter of does my employer offer benefits, but does my employer have thorough coverage to meet my needs in order to retain me.

Investment expectations

Not to be the chicken who simply crossed the road to lose their head and end up in the barbeque, business owners live their strategies every day with an expectation on the return of their investment. So too should the investment in insurance for employees provide a return. Very often salary based on occupation is predictable and the ONLY item to set a job posting apart are the benefits.

The real questions to then ask are:

·      Is my plan really competitive and/or comprehensive?

·      How do I know?

·      What has it been compared to?

·      What kind of analysis has been done to show this is a correct statement?

·      Do my people know the value of the coverage?

·      Has the plan been effectively linked to the compensation strategy of the organization?

·      Does the benefit package boost productivity results?

·      Can we measure the return on investment of the benefit plan to reduced turnover, increase performance, and reap the reward of safer, healthier employees?

Where strategy and execution meet

While Alfred Lord Tennyson’s poetry may have been slightly altered from his original “Charge of the Light Brigade” and coined the line, “Ours is not to reason why; ours is but to do or die” may in fact highlight the thought here that more than one question is necessary in any business endeavour. So too is the consideration that if the strategic goal of the organization is to increase revenue, build their customer relationships and sustain top-performing staff, then asking more than one question and how it impacts all aspects of business from operations to sales, to employee performance becomes necessary.

Those doing the interviews and hiring need to fully understand the benefits to “sell” the potential candidate on how this plan makes the organizations culture of excellence better by increasing performance, and being there when the need arises. This is the return on the investment.


Consider benefits now, or whenever you next utilize the benefit plan to make a claim, write up your next offer letter for employment, or review the package details at renewal. Can you confidently say that the plan is indeed “comprehensive” and “competitive” when it comes to investing in talent?

We’d be pleased to engage in a meaningful conversation on this and other benefit topics. Give us a call.

Note: this was written without the aid of Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Disclaimer: Please note that the information provided, while authoritative, is not guaranteed for accuracy and legality. The site is read by a world-wide audience and employment, taxation, legal vary accordingly. Please seek legal, accounting and human resources counsel from qualified professionals to make certain your legal/accounting/compliance interpretation and decisions are correct for your location. This information is for guidance, ideas, and assistance.