A group benefits package isn’t just a package. It’s a strategy, one that plays a crucial role in your effort to attract and retain the best candidates. In more ways than one, the benefits you offer determine your edge. With that in mind, let’s take a look at what your competition is up to. Last September, Kaiser Family Foundation released the results of its annual Employer Health Benefits Survey. Here are the highlights.

Employer, employee contributions

How do average annual premium contributions break down between the firm and the employee?

  • Workers with single coverage paid 17 percent of their premiums; their employers, 83 percent
  • The lowest employer contribution for single coverage was 73 percent (Tennessee); the highest, 91 percent (Hawaii)
  • Workers with family coverage paid 28 percent of their premiums; their employers, 72 percent

Those are averages. Individually, most employees paid less than 25 percent of their health plan costs. Yet it’s not uncommon for employees to contribute more. Fifteen percent of family-coverage workers paid between one quarter and one half of their premiums themselves. The number of single-coverage workers in the same bracket was 21 percent: more than one in five.

Small and large companies differ on deductibles

Last year, 63 percent of single-coverage workers at small companies had a deductible of $1 thousand or more. Only 39 percent of those at large companies had deductibles on that scale. The takeaway? Small employers use high deductibles more than do large employers – a lot more. The swing is almost 25 percent.

Are your competitors offering benefits?

The larger the business, the more likely the answer is to be yes.

  • 54 percent of very small businesses (3-49 workers) offer benefits
  • 89 percent of small businesses (50-99 workers) offer benefits
  • 97 percent of larger businesses (100+ workers) offer benefits

If you employ 50-99 workers, you can safely assume that your competition is offering benefits. If you employ fewer than 50, offering benefits could be a major differentiator for you. Forty-six percent of other businesses of your size are not offering them.

Other opportunities to get the edge

Only half of large employers offer HRAs and biometric screenings. Even fewer offer incentives for participating or penalties for not participating. The same holds true for wellness program incentives; this is another opportunity for differentiation.

If you’d like to offer more competitive benefits, but you’re concerned about controlling costs, we understand. Take a look at our newest whitepaper, in which we show you how to cut group healthcare costs by 10 percent or more. Specifically, we cover the differences between self-funded and fully-funded plans, the steps you can take to reduce claims, and the strategies you can leverage to negotiate medical costs down to the lowest possible rate (the Medicare allowable price).

Trust Beacon Path to guide you to a strategy that meets your needs and positions you to win against the competition.

Have you downloaded our new free report on How to Save 10% (or More) on Health Care? If not, get it here.

Leave a Comment