Public Sector Employees Want Customized Benefits

And public sector employers are more likely than their peers to offer a full range of benefits.

Employees in the public sector want customized benefits, according to a new report from MetLife.

Their employers are also more likely than their peers to offer a full range of benefits. For example, 41% of public sector employers offer a pension plan, compared with 16% of their private peers. Twenty-nine percent of public sector employers offer financial planning workshops and/or financial wellness tools, versus 18% of their peers. Seventy-five percent of public sector employers offer dental insurance, compared with 59% of their peers.

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Seventy-nine percent of public sector employees believe their employer offers a range of benefits that meet their personal and household needs. Asked what attracts them to a job, 88% of these employees say retirement benefits. Seventy-six percent say career development. Seventy-four percent say the employer shares their values. Seventy-three percent say on-the-job training, and 71% say the ability to customize benefits to meet their needs.

The ability to customize benefits is appreciated by 73% of Millennials, but only 59% of Gen Xers and 44% of Baby Boomers.

While 70% of public sector employees are satisfied with their job, when they believe that their benefits are effectively being communicated to them, that rises to 79%.

MetLife says the public sector has to attract more Millennials since they currently comprise only 25% of their workforce. Forty-eight percent of Gen Xers, and 25% are Boomers. One way to accomplish this, MetLife says, is by respecting Millennials as well-rounded people. Among all age groups, 87% of public sector employees are satisfied with their jobs when their employer encourages them to be themselves, and 86% are satisfied when they can voice their opinion without fear of retribution.

In addition, 80% of Millennials find career development, advancement opportunities and on-the-job training important and say these factors would increase their loyalty towards their employer. Only 29% of public sector Millennial employees have access to financial planning tools, whereas 42% of total Millennials employees have such access.

Among all age groups, 90% of public sector employees say financial wellness tools are important. Their top five financial concerns are having an emergency fund (70%), having enough money to pay the bills if someone in the household loses their job (67%), outliving their retirement savings (66%), being able to cover their monthly bills (65%) and being able to pay down debt (64%).