Perceived barriers keep small businesses from offering benefits. That’s the title of a recent article by MetLife Vice President Jimbo Story. Benefits Program Myths Debunked Story indicated that some small businesses hesitate to offer stronger benefits packages due to several common concerns: “...from the time it takes to administer them, to the lack of perceived value, to the return on investment (or lack thereof).” Then he added, “But these barriers are myths."
All business owners deserve the opportunity to offer a strong, attractive menu of benefits. The Small Business Healthcare Relief Act, if passed, will restore the rights of small business owners to incorporate a stand-alone Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA) into their benefits packages.
When trying to fill a vacant position, it can seem impossible to find the “right” person in an inbox full of resumes. A recent study from ADP states that mid-sized companies are not only concerned with recruiting top talent, but with keeping them – a challenge usually addressed in an employee retention strategy. If you have this concern, you are certainly not alone.
Employee retention is valuable to most employers, but Glassdoor’s 2016 statistics highlight the importance of holding onto good employees. Recruiting worthy workers is both time consuming and expensive. It isn’t as simple as posting an ad and interviewing candidates. Instead, as Glassdoor stated, recruiting and retaining employees “starts from the inside out.” To obtain and keep the best, employers must focus on employee engagement with a clearly defined mission and transparency.
The Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) is a low-cost – and sometimes free – health insurance option for children who qualify based on family size and income levels. Children who qualify can receive coverage that provides numerous benefits; however, eligible children cannot be included on their parents’ subsidized Marketplace plans.
Uncertainty is a latent variable. It is difficult to quantify however, if you are a small business owner and looked into alternatives to traditional group health insurance for your business over the last few years, you have no doubt experienced your fair share of elevated uncertainty. For decades small businesses have been using medical reimbursement plans to reimburse employees for their own individual health insurance premiums. These arrangements are explicitly allowed under current tax code as well as prior IRS guidance. In 2002, the IRS published Notice 2002-45 that provided the blueprint for companies to reimburse employees tax-free through plans referred to as HRAs. These plans provided an alternative to traditional group health insurance that were vital for small businesses that needed to offer a health benefit in order to compete with more established companies. Small businesses often lack the human resources to take on the burden of administering group health insurance. Moreover, the rapidly changing small group market promises that significant time will be required each year to assess benefit options and sustainability as carriers enter and leave the market, costs escalate and employees discover the same or better coverage options on the individual market.
For those purchasing individual health insurance for the first time, the transition may seem daunting. Fortunately, the process is not too complicated. This guide provides helpful information on where and when to buy individual health insurance as well as information on factors that could influence a person’s decision to buy a Marketplace or non-Marketplace plan.
Most American business include vacation days as part of an employee benefits package; but, since the year 2000, the number of vacation days that workers use has been steadily declining. From the 1970’s through the end of the century, workers used an about 20 vacation days per year. These days, it is more like 16. While having dedicated employees willing to work a lot is every company’s dream, leaving all that vacation time on the table is actually detrimental to productivity.
As the number of employer-sponsored pensions is continuing to decrease, the responsibility of saving for retirement has been left to employees alone. As a facet of employee retention strategy, many employers wrap “matching” plans or profit sharing programs into their benefits package. But even with the assistance in saving for retirement, the average American worker is still finding it to be a difficult task. So many people have questions about retirement: “How do I start a retirement account? How much do I need to save?” Adding financial education to your employee retention strategy can help employees answer these tough questions and can help companies avoid the cost of losing an employee.
Now is a great time to take charge of your healthcare by purchasing an individual health insurance policy. Doing so allows you to choose a plan that best suits your unique needs, including which doctors you would like to see and which level of coverage matches your healthcare requirements. Individual health insurance gives you the power to keep your insurance if you change jobs, so you will no longer feel pressured to stay with a company where you are unhappy simply to keep your health benefits. It also saves you money with premium subsidies. Most American families who earn less than $100,000 annually qualify for a federal subsidy if their employer does not offer group coverage. The subsidy amount is dependent on income and family size, and the average monthly subsidy is nearly half the cost of individual healthcare coverage. Purchasing individual health insurance may seem intimidating initially, but try to think of it like you would approach getting new car insurance. It really is that straightforward.
Disclaimer: The information provided on this website is general in nature and does not apply to any specific U.S. state except where noted. Health insurance regulations differ in each state. See a licensed agent for detailed information on your state. Zane Benefits, Inc. does not sell health insurance.