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Assignment 1
Name: Jolene Grof
For Dr. Larry Byrd

Date: April 25, 2014


Advantages to a Total Rewards Approach

There are several advantages to using a total rewards approach to compensating the workforce. The top five are described in the text. The following paragraphs discuss the facets of the Geico total rewards program that align with these advantages: The first facet is increased flexibility. Gieco offers full-time employees the option to choose their medical plan from a variety of plans. The company also has a dental plan that will pay out benefits to any dentist in the country. This provides employees with great flexibility in choosing the right dentist for their needs. The company not only has fitness centers at many locations but sometimes will offer employees discounted gym memberships at local establishments. This helps an employee choose a place that is comfortable (which could influence how often the person goes to the gym). The second facet is improved recruitment and retention. In providing some great benefits Geico hopes to find the right workers and ones that will stay with the company for the long haul. Employees are looking for balance when it comes to their work and life. This is one of the benefits of working for Geico. The company offers programs that can help employees juggle work and their outside of work lives and if employees are looking for this it is a great way to attract and keep excellent talent. Good employees seek out opportunities to grow (Heathfield, n.d.). Geico offers paid training for those individuals that need or want to gain more knowledge. The company also offers tuition reimbursement for full-time associates which not only helps the employee gain knowledge but allows that employee to then share that knowledge with the company or other employees. The third facet is reduced labor costs and cost of turnover. Making sure that the company gives employees the feeling that they are cared about is important. (Irwin, 2011) Geico offers an insurance studies program which helps employees understand the insurance business. When employees are offered a training program that helps them to understand the business they work in could help an employee feel more connected to the company and the reasons for why the company operates the way it does and understand the decisions that are made. If an employee feels more connected to a company they may be more likely to stay with the company. This will help not only help the company retain employees but also to keep costs down. By retaining employees and keeping turnover down the company will save money (reducing costs). The fourth facet is heightened visibility in a tight labor market. This section is all about employee needs and making sure to meet them. Employees are looking for an environment that meets what their needs are (Ruddy, 2007) and making sure that an employee feels that their needs are being met is important in the retention. Because companies are having trouble finding the necessary talent they need it is important for companies to make sure their employees feel like their needs are being met in order to keep that talent from straying to another company. Geico offers adoption assistance, long-term care plans, and plans to set aside tax-free money to pay for daycare expenses. These all align with people’s needs in order to continue working. There are times when employees work for companies and leave because these options are not available for them. Making sure that employees are able to start a family or take care of that family aligns with what employees feel their needs are and employees can make decisions on what company they work for based on if those needs are being met. The fifth facet is enhanced profitability. Many companies think a total rewards program will cost them more money but the reality of it is that companies need to find a cost-effective way to provide rewards that in the end save them money by retaining employees. The key is to implement a flexible plan that will allow employees to find what works for them. Today’s workforce is not all the same and the older generation was more concerned with pay and benefits rather than flexible work hours or work/life balance programs. The company offers 20 different investment plans for 401k. The company also offers profit sharing, life insurance and accident insurance. By having the option to choose which benefits an employee wants to enroll in it helps the employee take control of their own benefits instead of the company offering a set plan that may or may not fit the needs of what an employee is looking for from their employer. By giving employees a choice it helps keep costs down instead of automatically enrolling employees in programs the employee feels they do not need at the present time.

Total Rewards Strategy

Geico needs a strategy that addresses all of these advantages. The company should follow the following strategy toward this end. Geico will provide a flexible total rewards plan that helps employees choose the benefits and options of these benefits that will best suit their needs. The plan will not only help to gain new, talented employees but keep the existing talent in order to increase profitability by lowering the cost of turnover. Geico will ensure that employee’s needs are met so that employee will feel a sense of loyalty and connection to the company ensuring the a reasonable return on the company’s investment in the total rewards program.

The Communications Plan

In examining the effectiveness of the communication of Geico’s total rewards program based upon the Websites’s descriptions of the benefits, the following two changes for improvement are recommended: The first change is to change in what order the benefits are talked about on the site. In a survey in 2014 the top three benefits people were looking for were health, retirement and time off (Petrini, 2014). These three should be listed on the website in that order. This would help the average person be able to see the top three benefits options first, allowing Geico to put its benefits that are most important to employees first, allowing potential employees to check out the most wanted list for benefits without having to see the not so wanted benefits first. The second change is to add LinkedIn to the Stay Connected part of the page. This is after all a part of the site that is dedicated to attracting new employees and LinkedIn is a professional network.

Total Rewards Improvements

Hypothetically, many of the Geico employees are unhappy with the current total rewards plan. The following changes that should improve the total rewards program are recommended:
The first change is offer a flat rate reimbursement for gym memberships. Not all employees are comfortable going to the gym where they work. This would give employees the flexibility to find a gym that fits their needs and comfort zone. It could help an employee find a place that is close to home or work or on their way to and from work. This would help employees go to the gym more often if they chose the gym. The company should also reimburse a flat rate if the employee can prove that they went to the gym for a certain amount of days during the year (the rates should coordinate with the days attended).
The second change is helping employees understand their benefits. Geico could offer online videos and presentations to help employees understand their benefits (McGinty, 2014). When employees understand their benefits they can feel more in control of how they are using and choosing their benefits. Employees can sometimes be unsure of what all of their benefits are or how to use them and Geico could offer the best gift in the world to their employees, knowledge.

Heathfield, S. M. (n.d.). Top 10 Ways to Retain Your Great Employees . Retrieved April 25, 2014, from
Irwin, T. (2011). United Kingdom: Five Top Employee Retention Strategies. Retrieved April 25, 2014, from +Strategies
McGinty, K. (2014). 4 ways to help employees understand benefits. Retrieved April 25, 2014, from understand_benefits_10434.aspx#

Petrini, J. (2014). What Job Benefits are Most Important in 2014? Retrieved April 25, 2014, from
Ruddy, A. C. (2007). The WorldatWork Handbook of Compensation Benefits & Total Rewards. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons Inc.

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