Right off the bat you are going to want to disagree, but for a moment, as we navigate the conversation, let’s talk about employee group benefits and take money off the table of discussion. I promise, I will put it back on the table, but just for now, let’s indulge the concept of benefits without first thinking “rates” and “premium”.

Benefits are for humans

As business owners, we know people not only want benefits, but they need benefit coverage for financial protection, wealth creation, and risk mitigation. It’s been shown time and again employees who are cared for in this way are more productive, engaged staff and team members. In this way, from an organization’s perspective, benefits do attract and retain top talent. Is it now safe to surmise that benefits are important to both parties? Each have a stake in the success of a well thought out package.

Many times, it is the HOW that gets in the way.

·      How do we use a benefit plan as an attraction tool?

·      How do we use the benefit plan to retain our top talent?

·      How do I measure an effective return on investment?

The resistance then to setting up the plan everyone wants, with the coverage they need, seems to come back time and again, to rates and premium. (Told you we’d get there). But when we make the dollars the only focus and the only item to be negotiated, we lose sight of value. While I would assume we wouldn’t hire someone based on any one quality or qualification alone, or purchase a car simply based on the fact that it had wheels, so too is the same required when considering benefits.

Aligning the package

Benefits by the very fact that it includes an “s” means there are multiple items at play. When employee perceive no “value” in their benefit plan, they are seldom, if ever, referring to the premium. They are referring to the fact that they have tried to make a claim and received nothing back, therefore, whatever they contribute is too much.

Consider when a plan is purchased with the only deciding factor being “lowest cost”, organizations end of with “lowest value” benefit plans. A plan doomed to failure because no matter how employees try to use the plan, there are always limitations and exclusions preventing the claim from going through. It is my opinion, this is the ideal situation for any benefit insurer or provider because they offer the barest of coverage options, with rates to match and they too reap all of the reward.

Re-focus the lens.

Getting the “win” takes strategy. For employers who want to have an effective return on investment, link the “how” with the “what”—the “needs” to the “wants”.

We need employees to be fit and ready for duty. This is why they have been hired—to do a job. Employees want to be healthy. They need to know how to access coverage and what coverage to access.

Healthy Employees ARE Safe Employees

…and better benefits boosts productivity. The answer, then, lies in alignment.

Example … two-minutes tagged onto the end of the safety meeting or next team touchpoint:

Feet are your body’s foundation, so keeping them healthy is vital to your overall health.

Years of wear and tear can be hard on your feet. Overuse, shoes that don’t fit properly and even genetics can lead to injuries and disorders of the foot that can greatly impact your mobility.

Being job ready and fit for duty is where proactive prevention is key.

We want our team healthy. That is why your benefit plan includes coverage for:

·  Orthopaedic Shoes and Orthotics

·  Surgical stockings

Custom Made Shoes which are medically required up to a maximum of one pair per calendar year (must be constructed by a certified Orthopaedic footwear specialist and requires a doctor’s referral)

Feel free to use the example above or a version based on your own coverage (provided your benefit policy actually offers this coverage) and see how it goes over with your staff. Let me know the results.

We’d be pleased to engage in a meaningful conversation on this and other benefit topics. Give us a call.

Note: this was written without the aid of Artificial Intelligence (AI

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