It’s renewal season, a time when employers must make some hard decisions about their employee health plans. It could also be that now is the time to begin offering benefits. Below we offer three things to consider as you move through the planning process.
The cost of an employee health plan is not as straightforward as you might think, as there are many ways to approach it. There is the traditional group health path, where you choose one plan for your organization and the employee and employer share in paying the premiums. Fortunately, as a BAGI member in good standing, you have access to the organization’s health plan that can offer savings on this option.
Then there is ICHRA, a program that allows you to set your contribution toward an individual employee’s purchase of their own health insurance. Finally, you can go the PEO route, where you pool your employees with other employers to reap cost savings while offering Fortune 500 benefit packages.
It’s also important to note that cost goes beyond the amount of money that comes out of your bottom line. There are costs for not being able to grow your business because you cannot hire employees. There are costs for retraining employees as current ones leave for another organization that offers benefits. There are also costs for workers who are not able to take care of themselves when they get sick. All these situations affect the financial health of a business beyond an insurance premium.
Working with an independent insurance broker like the Wharton & Power Team means all your options can be explored, weighed and chosen based on the unique needs of your business.
The cost and offerings of an employee health plan can be affected by the health and needs of your employees. Better health usually means lower costs, but regardless, one never knows when a medical emergency will hit. Traditional group health programs require underwriting, which means the policy is set based on the medical information provided by the covered employees. Programs like ICHRA leave the individual health information to the employee, as they get to purchase the plan that best suits their needs. Understanding the makeup of your workforce will help you determine which type of employee health plan best suits your business goals.
Taking the time to understand the benefits your employees value will help you make an informed decision about which option to choose. It may be that your workforce is less concerned about premium contribution costs than deductibles. Or, dental and vision coverage is higher on the priority list than you would have thought. Perhaps they would like the option to contribute to an HSA. If attracting, retaining and caring for your employees are the goals for offering an employee health plan, then asking your workforce what they value will help you meet that intention.
The Wharton & Power Insurance Team has helped hundreds of Greater Indianapolis small businesses find the best balance of all these considerations. If you are looking to start or renew an employee health plan, reach out to us. Send us an email or give us a call at 317.663.4138.