How a travel company attracts top talent and increases pension engagement

Hotelplan is an international travel group with over 300 employees in the UK. Claire Timms, Senior HR Manager, has been part of the team leading the charge to build a new value proposition for all employees.

Going Beyond Salary Alone

As the business grows, Claire and her team are tasked with looking after their existing colleagues and filling open roles with the best talent possible. Recent research from CIPD has shown that salary alone is no longer enough to attract the top talent. Flexible working and investments in wellbeing are now critical drivers of both retention and recruitment.

Hotelplan is leading the way – going beyond salary alone to a more holistic proposition that covers wellbeing, sustainability and more. To help build a more compelling financial wellbeing proposition, Hotelplan turned to Octopus Money.

There’s now many solutions to choose from when it comes to supporting employees’ financial wellbeing. “We considered a few different services, including some online content platforms, but we had questions about how much traction that kind of service would get.” To engage existing employees and attract great talent, Hotelplan wanted to offer a service that would drive the biggest impact possible. “What stood out to us was the opportunity for our team to go beyond an online tool and actually speak directly to an expert,” Claire says.

The Response from Employees

The response has been phenomenal. In the first few weeks, over half of all employees have already booked a session with their money coach. Employees are rating their experience 4.9 out of 5 stars on average and already expressing their gratitude. In a review, one Hotelplan colleague said, “[My coach] felt warm, approachable, professional and non-judgy. I feel very reassured that he’ll help me get to a better position financially without making lifestyle or career decisions for me, or pushing me down a particular path.” Another said, “very clear and easy to understand…made me feel at ease straight away.” 

Claire says the experience has been eye-opening for many employees, who have never been given the chance to think through their financial goals with an expert. “People can be conservative with their goals…I know several cases where the coach has actually given them confidence that what they’re hoping for is achievable – whether it’s a certain kind of retirement or a house they have in mind.”

Hotelplan paired the launch of Octopus Money with a recent salary review and employee bonus. That gives employees an opportunity to talk to coaches about how to maximise the extra money they’ve earned. “Several people are talking to their coach about whether they should put some of their bonus directly into their pension,” Claire says. “We’ve already seen people increasing their contributions.”

Even though studies show that 95% of employees worry about money, there’s often a taboo about talking about it. So one of the most exciting outcomes for Hotelplan is to see more employees opening up. With the help of a friendly, independent expert, employees don’t leave money worries bottled up. Another Hotelplan employee said, “I couldn’t have felt more comfortable being open about my situation.” “I’m looking forward to putting together an action plan for my financial future.”

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