Thinking through aspects of insurance can be among the most challenging aspects of managing your human resource. Not only is it among the most significant expenses your company has to meet, but it is also a highly technical subject.
Still, you must deal with it. And there are two main ways as a small business you can address this necessary aspect –
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1. Figure Out the Insurance Landscape on Your Own
Yep, you can try to figure out what works best for your employees on your own. But you shouldn’t. The rules that govern health insurance are complex, the options are many, and it may be confusing.
The Bureau of Labour Statistics indicates small businesses struggle with providing insurance for their employees. According to the Bureau, 88% of employers with more than 500 employees offer insurance against 55% of employers with less than 100 employees.
The main reason behind these statistics is that big companies not only have considerable bargaining power and can also afford huge HR companies to help them choose the best plan. Small businesses, on the other hand, are overwhelmed by available choices and may not take up insurance out of fear of making the wrong decision or that the costs may tank their business.
But if you really must go out on your own, here is what you need to know –
- If you have more than 50 full time employees, then getting insurance for your staff is a legal requirement.
- Providing health insurance improves employee retention and job satisfaction.
- You will be eligible for tax benefits once you cover your employees.
Here is what you need to do –
- Research, speak to trade and professional associations in your sector, and get information on-
- What are the primary or necessary benefits available to employees in your industry?
- Which are the trusted insurance companies in your space?
- The average payable premium, co-pays, deductible being paid by small businesses?
- Reach out to the companies from the list of insurance carriers you have generated from the research. With an understanding of which plan is suitable for your business, reach out to them directly. You may find that some insurance companies only work through brokers while others work directly with small businesses.
Use customer review websites like the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) and Consumer Affairs and determine what other people are saying about them.
Once you find one that you think is the best choice for you, the company of your choice may have a representative walk you through their processes and packages.
Once you select the best insurance provider for your business, you need to fill out the paperwork and walk your employees through the same.
2. Work With PEO Specialized Broker
The second option you have is working with a PEO specialized broker. You’re better off working with a broker than going out on your own.
A PEO, also known as Professional Employer Organization, is a company whose specialty is gaining access to large group benefits for small to medium businesses.
A PEO broker is a company that represents different PEOs and work as a broker between business owner and PEO. PEO brokers work to serve your interests and will match your business to the most suitable PEO.
A broker takes time to understand your company and its needs. After a needs assessment, a broker will advise you of options available in the market that suits your needs. The broker will then present you with options and help you think through the best PEO service for your small business.
Brokers usually have a lot of experience and knowledge of the PEO insurance sector. They also have extensive networks and, if you pick the right broker, are always keen to get you satisfactory results.
Furthermore, there are additional benefits that come from working with a PEO –
- Working with a PEO means that you pay lower premiums and can still offer competitive benefits to your employees. A PEO becomes a co-employer on record. And since PEOs work with numerous other companies, they have hundreds of employees. This results in greater bargaining power and they can negotiate reasonable terms for your business.
- PEOs take up other HR administrative tasks for your business such as –
- Managing human resources and related aspects such as payroll and ensuring that you met your legal tax obligations.
- Support your risk management efforts.
Benefits of Working With a PEO for Insurance
- Available Options – PEOs have the capacity of big businesses when it comes to securing insurance. Premiums are lower with PEOs because they create programs with various carriers and have access to elaborate product offerings compared to small businesses. When you go into the market on your own, you have little bargaining power and it will be near impossible to get discounted programs.
- Insurance administration – A PEO is your co-employer, you get to offload the administrative aspects of insurance administration to them to carry out. PEOs will select, enroll, onboard, renew, help employees in the claim process, and all other aspects of the relationship with the insurance carrier. As co-employers, PEOs have an interest in getting the best insurance deal for you.
- Annual Transition – At the end of a year, the PEO managing your insurance will handle the renewal of contracts or a change to a new carrier. Whatever the case, the PEO will discuss your options and provide justifications for either renewing or transiting to new carriers. Your business will always be ahead of the changing insurance landscape, all thanks to your PEO.
- Employee Benefits and Satisfaction –PEOs negotiate for your employee’s insurance coverage that puts you on the same league, as far as benefits are concerned, as the big businesses in your sector. Meaning you will be able to attract and retain the best talent in the market.
- Other Human Resource Needs – A PEO takes care of all your human resource needs, including employee benefits.
Brokers are useful in helping you partner with the right PEO for your business. There are plenty of additional benefits when working with a PEO and MartinoWest can help you find the right one.
MartinoWest offers customized insurance bundles for small businesses. If you have any questions regarding how MartinoWest can support you in finding the right PEO for your business and manage your health insurance, please Contact MartinoWest. One of the experts will answer your questions and queries for FREE.