Re:benefit & Ernst & Young: The Impact of Flexible Benefits on Talent Attraction and Retention.

Re:benefit, in collaboration with Ernst & Young Bulgaria, organized a business breakfast, on the topic of “Employee  Attraction and Retention at  Optimal Cost – flexing your benefits program.” Around 50 HR, CFO, and CEO managers from leading companies from various sectors were introduced to the importance of providing employee benefits tailored to their individual needs and preferences.

The first part of the event focused on flexible benefits as a tool for talent attraction and retention. EY Bulgaria emphasized the importance for employers to offer their employees additional incentives and the freedom to choose the ones that they desire. Nevena Kovacheva, People Advisory Services-Leader, and TaxPartner at EY Bulgaria, shared the results of a survey, covering the UK.  indicating that approximately 50% of employees are willing to accept a lower salary in exchange for the opportunity to personally choose their additional benefits. Аlso, as it turns out, 1 in 4 employees, who planned to leave the company in the next 12 months, say they would remain, if their employers would provide them with more care for their well-being and personal needs. She highlighted Belgium as a good case study, where the state helps employers to offer flexibility by setting preferential tax treatment for a wide variety of benefits including such that support remote work, environmentally friendly transport solution, and more.

George Georgiev, co-founder of Re:benefit, and Petya Dinolova, New Business Development Director at Re:benefit, shared up-to-date data with attendees on the most preferred categories of benefits. Additionally, they drew attention to the unfortunate fact that over 90% of organizations in Bulgaria still offer only standard benefit packages (example with food vouchers and additional health insurance), depriving their employees of choice. As a result, a high percentage of benefits go unused, leading to inefficiency and increased costs for companies.

The second part of the event was dedicated to the challenge nowadays of offering flexible benefit programs. Pavlina Tsvetkova, People Advisory Services Manager at EY Bulgaria, explained that social benefits should meet certain conditions in order to be treated as such for tax and social security purposes. Among others, they must satisfy the social, living, and cultural needs of the employees, be available to all individuals hired under employment and management contracts and provided without creating monetary relation between the employer and the individual. Another condition would be if part of the cost fringe benefits is shared by the employees.

George Georgiev actively participated in the discussion, presenting the advantages of using an automated benefits management platform such as Re:benefit. He highlighted the advantages of freedom of choice and work-life balance that flexible benefits provide for the needs of every employee. He also shared data indicating that around 30% of employees have chosen a particular company specifically because it is already a client of Re:benefit. In addition, Petya Dinolova showcased useful information that by using the platform the employers have access to an overview of the activity in the consumption of benefits by their employees, but also unlimited access to various reports  (payroll reports, status reports, and invoices), as well as a dashboarding option to track the status of their employee’s choices. Finally, she mentioned the wide variety of service providers (nearly 50 companies) and added that the platform is enriched with at least 3 new vendors of products and services every month.

During the event, we received positive feedback from the participants and managed to generate interest for our platform. Many expressed a desire to learn more about the possibilities and services we offer for implementing our system in their organizations.

We would like to thank our partners from EY Bulgaria for organizing this successful event together with us and for their inspiring and valuable presentations. Our partnership with them is important as it enables us to be more confident and active in our shared mission of transforming the way talent is attracted and retained in Bulgaria.