top of page
  • Writer's picturehalugano

Become competitive with an effective welfare plan

In 1987 the World Commission on Environment and Development defined sustainable

that development which allows present generations to satisfy their needs without compromising the possibility for future generations to satisfy theirs»

Already from this definition, the relevance of Human Capital and its needs is clear, in terms of sustainability, alongside the now well-known environmental and economic components.

In the historical transition period in which we find ourselves, companies are called into question as advocates of change; goaded, on the one hand, by regulations, especially European ones, focused on environmental issues and driven, on the other hand, by the increasingly pressing welfare demands of the new generations.

The data that emerge in the strategic plan for the economic development of the canton of Ticino drawn up by AITI - Associazione Industrie Ticinesi, are almost alarming:

The 2022 - 2026 forecast shows how,a demographic decline of 5.1% is accompanied by a drastic increasein the number of non-active workers and an increase in demand for new work units. Employment needs will fluctuate between 33,000 and 46,000 units with a pool from which to draw of only 28,000 new potential workers. < strong>[2]

In this scenario, sustainability necessarily becomes a competitiveness factor for companies.

To attract a young and competent workforce, companies will not only have to comply with European directives in the field of environmental protection, but they will also have to offer benefits that go beyond adequate salaries, social security according to the law and safety working conditions.

The actions to be taken

Although the centrality of the problem is clear, the heterogeneity that characterizes the topic of Human Capital does not allow us to draw up a standardized action plan and/or universally applicable.

However, we can suggest 10 areas to focus on to implement a just transition.

1. Welfare and protection

2. Health and assistance

3. Work-life balance

4. Economic support for workers

5. Human Capital Development

6. Support for families for education and culture

7. Rights, diversity and inclusion

8. Working conditions and safety

9. Social responsibility towards consumers and suppliers

10. Community welfare

Although these are considered all crucial factors for positioning oneself competitively on the labor market, a possible ranking of importance depends on various factors which can range from territoriality of the company, the demographics of the staff and the sector in which the company operates; this is why, to be effective, a welfare plan must first of all respond to needs that are real.

In general, the following factors can be identified to take into consideration to create a successful welfare plan:

1. Integration with primary welfare

Today it is no longer sufficient to guarantee that the primary needs of workers are respected, welfare plans capable of making the company attractive integrate benefits that increasingly go beyond legal obligations.

2. Management vision

The welfare plan is not the sole responsibility of the Human Resources department, to become truly effective it must be completely embraced by the management as it requires formalisation, implementation budget and flexibility.

3. Company financial availability

A welfare plan, especially when varied and structured, is a significant cost for the company. However, it is now known that the worker's well-being is directly proportional to his productivity/efficiency. Therefore, although financial resources are required by the company, they are expected to be recovered over time.

4. Choice of service-benefits related to actual needs

A welfare plan cannot be reduced to a series of initiatives imposed from above but must be the result of collaboration between Management, Human Resources and operational staff so that it can respond to needs real and not a simple exercise in social washing.

5. Socio-demographic variables

To respond to real needs, the diversity of socio-demographic groups must also be taken into consideration; a well-structured welfare plan takes into account the diversity present within the company population and the related needs.

6. Territory: morphology, culture, presence of services

The needs of Human Capital must also correlate with territorial, cultural needs and local legislation which are not always reconcilable, this often requires mutual respect, negotiation and compromise.

7. Professional functions

A good welfare plan can support individuals in pursuing their professional goals by providing them with the resources and opportunities needed to succeed as in the case of education and training programs, coaching , psychological support and so on.

8. Salary policy

Although salary is not among the main concerns of the new generations, a certain salary discrepancy between men and women remains; women currently earn 14.1% less than men, tend to work in lower-paid sectors, work part-time and hold positions without supervisory responsibilities. A successful welfare plan can be a valid tool for creating equal opportunities for men and women.

9. Discriminating factors

Welfare is that tool that can reduce inequalities.In terms of gender equality, access to flexible working hours or to quality and affordable extracurricular services is fundamental in order to guarantee greater equality of opportunities. Likewise, policies that take into account the generational and cultural differences of the entire company population.

10. Simplicity

Once all the components to be integrated into the welfare plan have been identified, it is best to do so in a simple way so that its value can be understood by the entire company population.

11. Flexibility and continuous improvement

The Welfare plan is generally not a point of arrival but a continuous exchange of mutual feedback, flexible to the changes required by both the company and society.

12. Communication

Communication is central when talking about welfare both operationally and in terms of management. A communication that must be constant and reciprocal, never one-way.

In conclusion, it cannot be denied that CSR is becoming an increasingly complex and multi-faceted topic. Among the many debates that could be undertaken when talking about Human Capital today, the cornerstone that recurs is that, undeniably, we are experiencing a change that absolutely cannot be ignored if we want to continue doing business.

In a long-term vision, companies that have taken note of the new needs in the field of Human Resources should outline a strategy that prefigures the new problems to be faced< /strong> that will result.

Using a welfare plan in order to be competitive cannot be limited to an offer in line with the demands of the new generations of workers, but must foresee what their needs will be they will be born as a natural consequence; be it an offer of work spaces redesigned for new working dynamics or the adoption of methods of mitigating the psychological repercussions related to our era, ranging from initiatives that take into account family structures that are completely different from tradition.

We must not be frightened by the complexity of the topic, precisely to guide companies in building a welfare plan suited to their needs and those of their collaborators, we have developed a consultancy package dedicated to welfare and human resources.


bottom of page