The Top 3 Mistakes Employers Make When Implementing Group Health Benefits
When creating or updating your organization’s group health benefits plan, there are many elements to oversee. As a business leader, you probably know that the best levels of coverage and supplemental benefits like mental health or dental benefits depend primarily on your company’s needs.
Despite the unique nature of each company’s group health plan, there are several common pitfalls that many companies fall into when implementing their benefits. Taking the time to understand and avoid these issues can ensure your group’s health benefits plan’s long-term success and sustainability.
Let’s look at the top three mistakes employers make when determining and integrating their group benefits and how to avoid them.
1. Cost Sharing
The most tempting mistake many employers make is attempting to offset costs by implementing a cost-sharing plan. At first glance, these plans seem like a way to offer top-level coverage at a relatively low cost to both you and your staff.
Despite how things appear on the surface, cost-sharing nearly always leads to climbing costs for both employers and employees. If your employees are required to pay a monthly fee for their group health benefits, they will be highly observant of how much they get for what they pay.
A high volume of claims leads to insurance providers raising premiums, which are passed on to employees, further motivating them to ‘make the most’ of their coverage. In turn, the cost-sharing method creates an upward spiral of higher costs each year.
2. Long-Term Costs
As important as offering a competitive comprehensive benefits package is, it’s vital that you consider the long-term costs of your plan and if it’ll be detrimental to long-term growth. If you’re having a good year or have a large amount of capital to work with, you may want to reward your employees or attract new ones with the most benefits you can afford.
However, what many employers fail to consider is that group health plans are not a one-time investment. You may be able to afford the ultimate coverage this year, but how confident are you that the same will be true each year? While you can technically reduce coverage to save money, cutting benefits can be far more devastating to employee job satisfaction than offering a more sustainable plan from the outset.
Starting with the most extensive coverage might seem like a great option, but it may result in limiting your business growth or being unable to increase your employees’ salaries when the time comes. When considering your coverage, consider long-term costs alongside your plan for long-term growth.
Even if you avoid planning mistakes like the two mentioned above, proper implementation is key to the success of your group health program. Once you set up your plan, you must ensure that all eligible staff completes their registration before the enrollment period expires.
If you miss this window, you run the risk of something happening to affect your employees’ eligibility. For example, if someone is injured or becomes sick before enrolling, the cost of getting them onto the plan can be much more expensive (or even impossible).
Create and Implement Sustainable Benefits with Zarmac
Staying aware of these and other mistakes can help you offer the best coverage to your employees without breaking the bank. Working with a qualified expert group benefits provider ensures that you find the perfect plan for you and avoid potentially costly errors.
Zarmac Benefits has been providing benefit programs to both new and established businesses for over 20 years. We take the time to analyze what you need and customize a benefits package specifically for your business style, now and for the future.
Zarmac provides critical analysis specific to your business to deliver real choices, advise on trends, streamline renewals, and optimize your plan design. We make it easy for you and your team by supporting the management of your program. We also proactively educate and eliminate questions to ensure there are no surprises.
Ready to protect your business and your team? Find out more about the Zarmac difference!