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A Non-Traditional Way to Show Employee Appreciation

(March 1, 2012) - Employee Appreciation Day is here. This year, employees are perhaps more deserving than ever of appreciation when you consider the economy's impact on staff and headcount. Workers are being asked to take on more and more responsibilities, while bonuses, raises and promotions are few and far between. Given this type of environment, employees are in need of impactful and meaningful ways to demonstrate employer appreciation.

According to the 2011 Aflac Workforces Report, an online survey of more than 2,000 benefits decision-makers and more than 4,000 U.S. workers, 44 percent of workers recommended employers "improve [their] benefits package" to increase employee retention. Further, the study found 89 percent say strong benefits packages influence job satisfaction, and 86 percent believe they influence employee loyalty.* Benefits are not only critical for employee health care needs, but also serve as a way for businesses to show their staff that their health and well-being is a top priority.

Going beyond major medical health insurance coverage and offering voluntary insurance is one way to improve a company's benefits offerings. Companies like Aflac provide voluntary insurance policies to groups and individuals, with policies that include lump sum critical illness, short-term disability, accident, dental, life insurance and more. Business owners and benefits decision-makers can offer these options to employees at no direct cost to the company.

The study also revealed that employees are interested in voluntary plans, and found 66 percent would be willing to apply for additional insurance products if their employers did not provide the type and level of health insurance they desired.* These findings reinforce the need for voluntary options and provide the insight employers need to understand what employees truly want for complete job satisfaction.

Consider offering voluntary insurance options - a no-direct-cost solution that also expresses appreciation, fulfills a need, and greatly influences employee retention and loyalty. Doing so now may help curb a large exodus of workers who are just waiting to look for greener pastures at the first sign of economic stability.

To learn more about Aflac, and its group and individual insurance policies, visit

Article by Joe Bohling, Senior Vice President, Chief Human Resources Officer, Aflac
Joe Bohling joined Aflac Incorporated in July 2011 as Senior Vice President, Chief Human Resources Officer. With more than 20 years of experience in a variety of industries and disciplines, he oversees HR operations and administers vital business services including benefits, staffing, compensation, recruiting, talent management, employee relations, diversity and Human Resources information systems to more than 4,000 employees.

*2011 Aflac WorkForces Report, a study conducted by Harris Interactive for Aflac, September 2010, February 2011

Coverage underwritten by American Family Life Assurance Company of Columbus. Group coverage underwritten by Continental American Insurance Company, which is not licensed to solicit business in Guam, Puerto Rico, or the Virgin Islands. In California, group coverage underwritten by Continental American Life Insurance Company. In New York, coverage underwritten by American Family Life Assurance Company of New York.

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