Focus on providing more than just a pay cheque to boost productivity
98% of all companies with employees in Canada are small businesses and
nearly half (48 per cent) of the working population is employed by a
74% of small business owners feel an obligation to take care of their
79% of small business owners agree that having a company-sponsored
retirement plan is as much for their benefit as it is for their
66% of small business owners believe offering a health benefits plan will
help their business
TSX/NYSE/PSE : MFC
SEHK : 945
WATERLOO, Oct. 4, 2012 /CNW/ - Satisfied employees are more productive
and focused according to Canadian small business owners surveyed for
the second annual Manulife Financial Small Business Research Report,
and providing health and retirement benefits are a key component to
boost employee productivity.
Released today, Manulife Financial's research report measured the
attitudes that more than 1,101 small business owners across the country
have towards their employee health benefit and retirement plans,
showing that 95 per cent of respondents make the connection between
satisfaction and productivity. Providing employee benefits is a key
tool in building employee satisfaction.
"Health benefits and retirement plans can have a significant positive
impact on the productivity of a small business owner's company," said
Marc Avaria, Vice-president, Group Small Business, Manulife Financial.
"Investing in your employees will also help attract and retain the best
talent, all of which ultimately support the success of the company."
Employees who receive health benefits are not the only ones who appear
to be satisfied. Small business owners say they are equally satisfied
with having a company health and retirement benefits plan. In fact,
over 7 in 10 small business owners say that having a company health and
retirement benefits plan is as much for their own well-being as for
their employees'. Furthermore, small business owners believe that
offering health benefits to employees serves as strong incentive for
workers. Almost half (48 per cent) of respondents believe a health
benefits plan is more effective than paying employees a higher wage.
Small business owners cite a variety of reasons that motivated them to
offer an employee benefits plan. The top reason is recruitment and
retention, with 28 per cent saying they use these benefits to attract
and retain employees. Small business owners also provide health
benefits as a competitive advantage, with 17 per cent saying that they
offer these benefits to keep up with the competition.
Likewise, company-sponsored retirement plans are also excellent
recruitment and retention tools. According to the research results,
small business owners who provide a retirement plan cite a variety of
motivations, including encouraging retirement savings (22 per cent) and
retaining employees (21 per cent). Of those who do not offer a
retirement plan to employees, 43 per cent say they would be motivated
to do so in order to reduce turnover, 38 per cent cite the benefit from
tax incentives, and 31 per cent the need to attract top-quality staff.
The report shows that 41 per cent of small business owners agree that
they have a responsibility to ensure that their employees save for
retirement. "The reality is that millions of small business employees
in Canada don't have access to a workplace retirement savings plan and
are not saving enough for retirement. Small business owners have an
opportunity to educate themselves on existing retirement programs and
the new Pooled Registered Pension Plan (PRPP) to determine the best
option suited to them," Mr. Avaria said. "Reinforcing the fact that
your company is supporting your employees' financial future is a great
means to boost loyalty to your business."
About Manulife Financial
Manulife Financial is a leading Canada-based financial services group
with principal operations in Asia, Canada and the United States. In
2012, we celebrate 125 years of providing clients strong, reliable,
trustworthy and forward-thinking solutions for their most significant
financial decisions. Our international network of employees, agents and
distribution partners offers financial protection and wealth management
products and services to millions of clients. We also provide asset
management services to institutional customers. Funds under management
by Manulife Financial and its subsidiaries were C$514 billion (US$504
billion) as at June 30, 2012. The Company operates as Manulife
Financial in Canada and Asia and primarily as John Hancock in the
Manulife Financial Corporation trades as 'MFC' on the TSX, NYSE and PSE,
and under '945' on the SEHK. Manulife Financial can be found on the
Internet at manulife.com.
About the Manulife Financial Small Business Research Report
The Manulife Financial Small Business Research Report is based on the
results of an online survey of 1,101 Canadian small business owners and
senior managers across industry sectors and regions. The research was
conducted by the Rogers Connect Market Research group of Rogers
Publishing Ltd., on behalf of Manulife Financial.
The survey was fielded in April and May 2012. For the purpose of this
research, "small business" was defined as having between two and 100
employees. The margin of error is ±3.0%, 19 times out of 20.
1Industry Canada/Statistics Canada (2011): http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/sbrp-rppe.nsf/eng/h_rd00033.html
2Except where noted, for the purpose of this research, "small business"
was defined as having between two and 100 employees
3 Companies with 11 to 100 employees
SOURCE: Manulife Financial Corporation
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