Group Benefits – Overview
Employers that offer group benefits to their employees at any stage of the business growth can have a significant return on investments. For example, it gives your business:
- competitive edge in attracting and retaining the best talent
- adds value to your compensation package
- maintain a healthy workforce
Most companies can benefit from a “traditional group benefits plan”. A traditional group benefits plan includes (health, dental, life insurance, accidental death and dismemberment benefits) and a premium that your business can afford. You can always add a health spending account later to enhance your benefits offering.
Here are steps to get started with your employee group benefits plan:
- Get a broker to help you develop a group benefits plan design suitable for your employee demographics and health care needs. Your broker will compare all group benefits insurance plans from various insurance providers and present the best offer to you. This process allows you to do a benefit-cost analysis to ensure that you are getting the most competitive rates in the market.
- Adjust your group benefits plan design – once you receive the quotes, adjust benefit caps and maximums are applied to suit the unique needs of your employees as well as your business budget.
- Your broker will then complete a master application and submit it as well as the employee enrolment forms to the insurance carrier for underwriting.
Managing Your Group Benefits Premium
Amidst rising employee group benefits insurance cost, the sustainability and effectiveness of your group plan will depend on how you control costs. Here are a few cost containment strategies:
- Don’t be afraid to share the cost of the monthly premium with your employees. Slipt insurance premium can be done through payroll deduction, which will help reduce the overall cost incurred by the company.
- Include annual deductibles, co-insurance or prescription dispensing fee features in your plan design. These are incentives to keep your employees financially involved in managing their benefits expenditures.
- Protect your group benefits insurance plan from exorbitant drug claims. Take advantage of any government programs or subsidies that offer assistance to small businesses and their employees to offset high drug costs. The Ontario Trillium Drug Program is an example of such an initiative.
- Include a three months waiting period before you include new employees to the group plan.
- Employee engagement – Get annual feedback from your employees about their group benefits insurance plan. Also, let your broker do regular employee meetings to educate your employees about the roles they should play in helping to prevent fraud and abuse. An empowered employee group will have a positive impact on your startup’s claims experience.