Over half of workers will enroll in new benefits

Financially protecting themselves and their families is priority for U.S. employees

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (Nov. 16, 2021) — As we enter another enrollment season amid the pandemic, new research from employee benefits provider Unum (NYSE: UNM) shows U.S. workers plan to spend more time reviewing their options. They also plan to enroll in different benefits and pay more attention to the benefits their employers offer.

“Choosing your benefits is one of the most important financial decisions you’ll make this year,” said Rob Hecker, vice president of Global Total Rewards at Unum. “The ongoing pandemic reminds us of the need to be prepared. You can protect you and your family’s financial future with the right benefits.”

Unum’s research among 1,500 full-time U.S. workers in August 2021 found new trends due to the ongoing pandemic:

  • Over half (57%) of workers plan to enroll in benefits they were not enrolled in last year.
  • More than two thirds (68%) of workers say they are more concerned about planning for their family’s financial needs
  • 66% of workers are more interested or aware of the employee benefits their company provides; this number highest among Millennials (78%) and Gen Z (73%).
  • 2 in 3 workers (67%) plan to pay more attention and spend more time reviewing their employee benefits.
  • 42% of workers are concerned about their mental health; these numbers are highest among Millennials (55%).

Managing Mental Health

Unum’s Behavioral Health Solution guides workers to the support that is right for them including access to a licensed therapist and a library of mental health resources.

Work-life balance reigns supreme

Generous PTO and paid family leave are the benefits most important to full-time U.S. workers. More than one third (37%) of workers say generous PTO is most important to them. While 36% said paid family leave is most important.

Combat “The Great Resignation” with voluntary benefits

The number of workers looking for a new job has almost doubled since spring. According to a PricewaterhouseCoopers pulse survey, 65% of workers are on the hunt for a new job.[1]

More than half of workers (56%) are more likely to stay with their current employer because of the benefits package. And 8 in 10 employers believe the pandemic has made employees more interested in or aware of the benefits the organization offers.[2]

“It’s no secret that today’s labor market presents employers with unique hiring challenges,” said Kimberly Bowen, vice president of Global Talent Management at Unum. “Voluntary benefits can be one way to attract and retain top talent to show you value your employees.”

Understand your benefits

Download Unum’s Annual Enrollment Guide for an overview of common workplace benefits. You’ll find clear definitions on coverage, and tips for evaluating what you may need depending on your unique situation.

[1] PwC, “Next in work” U.S. Pulse Survey. August 2021.

[2] Unum. 2021 Employer Benefits Education and Enrollment Survey of 404 U.S. employers. Unum Group. August 2021.

About Unum Group

Unum (NYSE: UNM), an international provider of workplace benefits and services, has been helping workers and their families for more than 170 years. Through its Unum and Colonial Life brands, the company offers disability, life, accident, critical illness, dental, vision and stop-loss insurance; leave and absence management support and behavioral health services. In 2021, Unum reported revenues of $12.0 billion and paid $8.2 billion in benefits. The Fortune 500 company is one of the 2022 World’s Most Ethical Companies, recognized by Ethisphere®.


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