How a Small Business can offer Big Benefits
As a Small Business, a competitive benefits package is essential to attracting talented employees. But trying to offer the same level of benefits that a larporation does can be a difficult thing unless you know which carriers specialized in providing coverage for small groups and not big ones. But if you find the right companies to use comma your small business benefits package can be just as competitive and offer all of the same features as those of the big corporations.
Most small businesses can come up with a basic benefits package. But making sure it is on the same level of competitiveness as a big corporations is a different matter. Plus, the big corporations offer other fringe benefits such as Health Wellness Plans, Financial Wellness Plans, and Family Assistance Programs. Then you need to add a 401K plan that has low fees and a strong selection of high-quality funds.
The first step is to identify the most competitive carriers for a group of your size. Each carrier has their own sweet spots. It also depends on your region and the features you want. But there are certain key features and benefits that must be included for you to stay competitive.
A group health insurance plan is a basic necessity for most any white collar business. The onset of Obamacare has caused more and more businesses to adopt group plans. Especially white collar businesses who’s employees do not qualify for premium reductions on the exchange.
One of the most important features to consider is the network available with your plan. Most employees already have a doctor they want to continue seeing. The best way to make sure of that is to have a very large Network with your plan. One of the biggest complaints from employees about group health insurance is that the network does not cover the doctor that they want to see.
The next issue is a pretty obvious one, the price. This is an area that the big corporations have a decided advantage against the little guys. Unfortunately, the big corporations do have an advantage in pricing. The larger the group, the better discounts you receive. The best way to combat this is to move to a “High Deductible Plan”. This lowers the Premiums, but also shifts some cost at the doctor onto the employee. To off-set the extra cost, you can add a Health Savings Account and even contribute some to it each year for the employee. The employee is also able to contribute savings to the HSA, and unlike a FSA, the HSA funds do rollover each year and never expire. Many employees grow to like the high-deductible plans combined with the HSA.
The best carriers to use for group health insurance vary wildly from state-to-state. In South Carolina, Blue Cross Blue Shield has one of the most comprehensive and competitive group health insurance plans for small businesses. They also have the largest Network by far. So those two things combined often makes them the go to ensure for small groups in South Carolina.
Dental and vision insurance
Often the business owner just bundles their dental and vision insurance in with the group health policy. But that is usually a very big mistake. Most bundled type Solutions like that are not very high quality dental and vision policies and often have very low benefits compared to other options. And that makes four unhappy employees when they compare your business is benefits to what they have had in the past or are being offered by other companies.
One of the biggest issues with these plans are waiting periods four major work. Especially with the dental plans. Mini group dental plans require a two-year waiting period before any major services are covered. But comma if you have your advisor shot in the market for you, there are multiple options that have only a one-year waiting period for major procedures, and some have no waiting period at all even. And these options do not skimp in other areas of the benefits offered.Long waiting periods for dental procedures are another big complaint from employees at small businesses.
The networks are the other big issue. A lot of the lower-cost or bundled options have very limited Networks. But with a little homework, you can find plans that have very wide networks or even no network at all and allow you to use any dentist that you want.
Group life insurance and disability insurance
Disability insurance is one of the most important types of insurance someone in their working years can have next to health insurance. The majority of people that have disability insurance have it through their work. Unfortunately, most group disability plans have subpar coverage that is inadequate for many employees. But with a little bit of homework from your broker, you can find disability policies to offer that are very comprehensive and give strong benefits if ever needed. Hands down the most important benefit for the Disability Policy to have is that it covers the person’s own occupation. This is particularly important for people who are highly skilled and compensated very well for that skill. Mini group disability policies only pay benefits if the person is unable to perform any occupation, not their own specific occupation. For obvious reasons that can be a big issue when people try to make a claim for benefits. Often, the policies that use the any occupation definition, are essentially worthless for the majority of disability claims. If you only asked one question about your group disability coverage, it should be if it uses any occupation or own occupation definitions for paying the disability benefits.
Offering life insurance above and beyond the basic benefit provided by the group health plan has become standard in the corporate world. It is also standard in the white collar business World in general. There are many different options for a supplemental life insurance policy for your employees. There are even options that guarantee acceptance no matter what the employee’s health condition is. This is called a guaranteed-issue life insurance policy. That type of policy has become standard at Big corporations.But only two or three carriers offer guaranteed issue coverage for very small businesses. The good news is that ferns with as few as just 3 people can get guaranteed issue life insurance. The catch is that you just need to know which carrier offers it. But this is the perfect example of how using the right company will allow your business to compete with the big corporations when it comes to the benefit plan to offer.
Supplemental Group Insurance includes cancer insurance, critical illness comma Hospital Indemnity and comma and accident insurance. If there is a benefit that you don’t offer this group of benefits are the only ones you can get away with and still have what would be considered a competitive benefits package. Butt it usually cost nothing for you to give employees the option to purchase these lines of coverage. So it just makes sense to at least offer this to employees even if they don’t take you up on it. The differences in benefits from company to company can vary with these types of policies but not nearly as much as some of the other points I’ve mentioned about other types of benefits. Usually, you want to make sure that the underwriting is guaranteed issue or at least simplified enough that the majority of your employees will be able to qualify for it. After that, just make sure it is with a well-rated company that has a recognizable name
How a small business can offer the same level of benefits a big business can.