Most US workers value time off flexibility and paid leave benefits

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (Dec. 9, 2022) — The top three non-insurance employee benefits U.S. workers want are paid time off (PTO), flexible work options, and paid family leave, according to new research from employee-benefits leader Unum (NYSE: UNM). 

Multi-generational workforce with multi-faceted needs
For most employees in the U.S., generous PTO and flexible or remote work topped the list in 2022. But for the first year, what workers want differs by generation with mental health resources/support topping the list for Millennials (39%) and Gen Z (42%). 

Unum’s research found this year was the first time Boomers, Gen X, Millennials, and Gen Z have different priorities and needs.

“A multi-generational workforce is a huge benefit for companies,” said Liz Ahmed, executive vice president of People and Communications at Unum. “With the diversity of background, experiences, and thought employees bring, employers need to make sure there’s something in their benefits package for everyone’s different stage of life.” 

Lack of access to emergency savings 
Although the generations differ in their top three priorities, when opened to the top five, there is one common denominator: emergency savings. 

Sixty-four percent do not have access to an emergency savings option through their employer. This benefit ranks third for Boomers (25%), third for Gen X (32%), and second for Gen Z (37%). 

Emergency savings can help prepare for unexpected expenses – without dipping into retirement or using credit cards.

These are the top 15 non-insurance benefits for U.S. workers:
  1. Generous paid time off program (39%)
  2. Flexible/remote work options (32%)
  3. Paid family leave (for childcare or caring for adult family member) (31%)
  4. Mental health resources/support (30%)
  5. Emergency savings (28%)
  6. Professional development (18%)
  7. Financial planning resources (18%)
  8. Fitness or healthy lifestyle incentives (15%)
  9. ID theft prevention (14%)
  10. Gym membership or onsite fitness center (12%)
  11. Student loan repayment benefits (9%)
  12. Pet friendly offices (7%)
  13. Personalized health coaching (6%)
  14. Sabbatical leave (5%)
  15. Dedicated volunteer hours (3%)

New World of Work: Voluntary benefits to retain talent
To be competitive in the talent marketspace, employers should prioritize better work/life integration.  

Employers should also continue to provide affordable and accessible benefits – if they don’t already – to fit personal or family structures.

Unum benefits, offered through employers, can help protect finances when life and the unexpected happens.


Methodology: Unum consumer research of 1,000 full-time, U.S. working adults, November 2022.



Share on social media:

About Unum Group

Unum Group (NYSE: UNM), an international provider of workplace benefits and services, has been helping workers and their families for 175 years. Through its Unum and Colonial Life brands, the company offers disability, life, accident, critical illness, dental, vision and stop-loss insurance; leave and absence management support and behavioral health services. In 2022, Unum reported revenues of about $12 billion and paid $8 billion in benefits. The Fortune 500 company is one of the 2023 World’s Most Ethical Companies, recognized by Ethisphere®. 

Visit the Unum Group newsroom for more information, and connect with us on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Instagram.