Voluntary Life Insurance Increases Worker Satisfaction

BY Rachel Cagle
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Although just over a quarter of employed Americans (27%) have voluntary group life insurance, 68% of workers who say they don't because their employer doesn't offer it would be somewhat or very likely to purchase it if offered at their company.

That's according to a survey conducted online by The Harris Poll on behalf of OneAmerica of over 2,000 U.S. adults 18 years or older, among whom over 1,000 are employed full- or part-​time. The survey illustrated why this foundational employee benefit is desired: to protect themselves and their loved ones from future financial hardship.

Why Offer Voluntary Life Insurance?

Jim McGovern, senior vice president of employee benefits at OneAmerica says, "For most employees, the workplace is the only opportunity they have to purchase life insurance."

When asked the reasons why they have voluntary group life insurance through their employer, 60% of employees who have it say it's to protect family/​loved ones from future financial hardship; 44% say peace of mind; 40% to pay off debts and final expenses in the event of their passing; 27% to replace a spouse/partner's income in the event of their passing; and 26% to leave an inheritance for children or grandchildren.

Voluntary life insurance is optional, provided by an employer that an employee pays for should they choose to have it.

The OneAmerica/​The Harris Poll survey provided opportunities for carriers to address:

  • Among employed Americans, significantly more men (31%) than women (23%) say they have voluntary group life insurance through their employer.
  • Only 30% of those with voluntary group life insurance through their employer reported they have more than $100,000 in life insurance coverage. A larger proportion of men (33%) than women (24%) report they have over $100,000 in coverage. The second-​most popular is between $51,000 and $100,000 in coverage, with 28 percent of employees who have coverage citing that amount.
  • Of the 73% of employed Americans who reported they did not have voluntary group life insurance through work, the leading reason all age groups didn't have coverage was not that they had other obligations/​expenses (13%), thought it was unaffordable (11%) or that they didn't see the value of it (11%), but that their employers don't offer the benefit (42%). This was especially true for adults between the ages of 35 and 54, with 48% citing their employers not offering group life insurance as the reason for lack of coverage. Ten percent of those who don't have voluntary life insurance through work say it's because they are healthy and don't need it.

Life insurance is one of the most important types of insurance coverage available to the financial wellness of middle America, McGovern added. "Companies who offer voluntary group life insurance keep their own benefits costs low and give their employees a valuable, lower-​cost life insurance option than the employees turn to in the individual insurance marketplace."

Sixty-​eight percent of employees who don't have voluntary group life because their work doesn't offer it are "very likely" or "somewhat likely" to purchase voluntary group life insurance if they did offer it.

Sponsored search results led 52.8% of Life Insurance Policy Buyers to take action last year, according to AudienceSCAN. This audience is also 13% more likely than other adults to take action after receiving email advertisements. Insurance companies can reach this audience through internet banner ads, which influenced 43.3% of these shoppers to take action last year. This audience is 72% more likely than other adults to be on the lookout for financial/​retirement planning services. Insurance sellers can sell ad space on their website to companies such as these who target the same customer set.

AudienceSCAN data is available for your applications and dashboards through the SalesFuel API. Media companies and agencies can access AudienceSCAN data through the AudienceSCAN Reports in AdMall.