The American Compensation Association (ACA) has recently completed
a study based on responses from twelve hundred fifty–six organizations
of work/life programs and compensation.
The survey found that eighteen percent of companies currently use
some kind of work/life program to reward employee performance. Another
forty-three percent don't currently use such programs but believe
they will do so in the future.
Forty-eight percent of the respondents currently use non-monetary
compensation as a reward for performance.
Twenty-four percent of the respondents use a quantitative measure
to link work/life programs to employee satisfaction, but less than
five percent attempted to do the same thing for employee performance.
In other words, they do not try to measure such things as improved
productivity, improved profitability, or improved customer satisfaction.
WALLY'S COMMENT...I don't think that work/life programs as part of
the compensation mix are a major trend in themselves. Instead, I
see them as part of a much larger trend which has two components.
The employee component shows us a major move toward looking at
life in its totality. That includes work/life, family/life, and
community/life. We are seeing people make decisions about their
life that take all of these things into account. For some folks,
with the flexibility that networked communications now offer, the
traces in places where they can live has improved dramatically.
The employer component is similar. Employers are increasingly taking
everything into account about the way that they compensate people
and understanding that once basic economic levels are okay for an
employee, other measures such as quality of work/life, flexible
work hours, integration of work/life and family/life take on greater
This is actually nothing new for smaller businesses who have traditionally
had to come up with alternatives to cash compensation because of
their limited cash resources. Because of their size, many small
business can do these kinds of things on a case by case basis. Larger
employers must, necessarily, handle this stuff programmatically.