Picwell Blog

Supplemental Benefits: Why You Can't Afford Not to Offer Them

Feb 10, 2021 10:30:00 AM / by Picwell

As a benefits professional, you already know that a well-crafted benefits package attracts top talent and keeps it in house. But, with the changes we’ve seen over the past several years, employees and job candidates now want more than just a health insurance plan and a retirement savings match. Luckily, supplemental benefits can help fill the gaps left by traditional benefits plans. 

As you probably know, your employees’ needs have changed dramatically in the past year due to COVID - and so have their expectations. Employees are now relying on their employers to provide an array of supplemental benefits that can help them save money and secure their financial futures. 

And many employers are delivering!

In response to this new expectation, ninety percent of North American companies surveyed are either actively providing supplemental benefits or plan to in the near future. So, if maintaining your organization’s competitive edge is a priority, supplemental benefits are no longer a nice-to-have; they’re a must-have.

A Quick Overview: What Are Supplemental Benefits?

Before we dig into the details, let’s quickly review what we mean when we use the term “supplemental benefits.” 

Also known as voluntary (or fringe) benefits, these employee perks supplement your main benefits (i.e., health insurance and retirement savings). Supplemental benefits often provide additional insurance coverage for life, disability, dental, vision, long-term care, critical illness, accident, and pets. Other examples of these benefits include, but aren’t limited to:

  • Identity theft protection 
  • Legal plans
  • Student loan refinancing/consolidation programs
  • Financial wellness services

Now that we’ve got that out of the way, let’s talk about why they matter.

Why Supplemental Benefits Are So Important

In order to run a highly successful organization, you need to treat your employees as individuals. Each and every employee has their own distinct needs, and the more you can cater to those needs, the more loyalty you will receive in return. Your organization can no longer get away with offering the same, cookie-cutter benefits package to everyone and expect employees to be satisfied. 

Supplemental benefits allow each member of your workforce to customize a benefits package to fit their unique, ever-changing circumstances. As employees grow with your company, they will inevitably move through various life stages. Supplemental benefits are designed to support those inevitable shifts. Think about it: your 20-something recent grads may not be thinking about long-term care insurance, and instead might be thrilled by a student loan refinancing program to help with lingering education costs. Conversely, your employees nearing retirement are likely not so concerned about paying back student loans but are increasingly worried about covering the cost of long-term care. 

Neither of the scenarios described above are covered by a traditional health insurance plan. To keep employees productive and engaged, you need to provide solutions to help offset these types of costs. This can be achieved by offering supplemental benefits. 

Now that we’ve covered the why, let’s explore the how. 

How Supplemental Benefits Help Your Organization 

Over the last several years, employee participation in supplemental benefits has been on the rise and with the effects of COVID wreaking economic havoc, we expect it will only continue to trend upward. That means your current and future employees will increasingly expect your company to provide a customizable benefits experience. If you give your team members the perks and support they need -- no matter what stage of life they’re in -- you’ll likely see a boost in employee morale, satisfaction, engagement, and productivity - all of which will only positively affect your bottom line.

The best part? You get to be the hero without incurring significant costs to the company!  Most times, your employees will foot the entire cost of these ancillary benefits via payroll deductions. And, since you’ll negotiate group pricing for these benefits, your employees can elect them at an affordable rate. It’s a win-win.

Effective Communication is Key

As you can see, supplemental benefits can be great for both your employees and your company. But, they’re only valuable if your team members know about them and use them. You need an effective way to communicate your offerings that will keep your employees’ attention and simply describe the benefits available.

Enter Picwell

Picwell is a sophisticated benefits decision support solution that can help your employees not only understand all of the medical benefits available to them, but also any supplemental benefits your organization offers.

When evaluating supplemental benefits, Picwell will provide employees with all of the information they need to know about each benefit like what they are, how they work, and what they cost.

The best part? This information is provided in various formats including text descriptions, term definitions, and quick informative videos. So, no matter what method of communication your employees prefer, you can rest assured their preferences will be met.


Using a benefits decision support solution like Picwell is a time saver for both your employees and your HR department. Employees can get through the dreaded chore of signing up for benefits in just a few minutes. And the quick and easy process minimizes the need for live support, reducing your workload and saving your team the headaches often associated with benefits enrollment! 

Last, using a solution like Picwell can help everyone save money. In fact, on average, Picwell users saved $1000 more than non-Picwell users. And employers have saved up to $94 per employee per year after implementing Picwell. These numbers add up!

Supplemental Benefits Are Crucial To Success

It’s easy to see, supplemental benefits are more popular than ever. They’re no longer a “nice to have.” They’re an essential, in-demand component of your benefits package. To keep your current top talent and attract future bright stars, you need to offer a robust assortment of benefits that caters to every life stage - and you need to communicate these offerings well.

Luckily, Picwell’s AI-driven solution makes selecting the right benefits easier than ever before. 

Want to see our innovative benefits decision support solution in action? Watch this video.

Ready to talk to someone about implementing Picwell in your organization? Schedule a demo.

Topics: Open Enrollment, Benefits Decision Support, Health Insurance, supplemental benefits, voluntary benefits


Written by Picwell