Two themes have emerged in employer benefits trends this year: cost cutting and employee output optimization. Both are designed to get more from employees at lower costs. Plus, a few legal changes to keep employers on their toes.
Unlike years past, these trends are being implemented with changes to both traditional and modern benefits solutions. In this post, we will explore how that will affect a la carte benefits offerings.
What Does This Mean for Employer Benefits?
- HDHP plans become the Norm – In 2018, over 65% of large employers offered a high deductible health plan in addition to traditional health plans. In 2019, More than 9 in 10 employers expect to offer high-deductible plans in 2019. Why? HDHPs are cheaper for employers to offer. In order to compensate for the higher out-of-pocket costs, employers are also increasingly offering HSAs (health savings accounts) to employees. They also are the only way to save over the long-term for health costs. The results of higher healthcare expenses are the rapid adoption of HDHPs and HSAs.
- Paid Leave Expands – Two things are at play here. First, an extra-competitive job market is forcing employers to offer top-tier (but low cost) benefits. Paid leave tops that list. Second, new laws, like the Paid Family Leave in California are forcing national companies to increase their baseline paid leave offerings. Smaller companies will likely be forced to follow to stay competitive.
- Financial Well-Being – This one might be surprising. Employers have already increased financial well-being benefits in 2017. In fact, nearly half of employers offer some kind of financial advice programs. This includes areas like student loan debt, personal finance & budgeting. Some programs even extend to help with emotional well-being. The rationale is that financially secure and happy employers are more productive.
One Final Benefits Trend
One bonus perk to these modern benefits experiences should be better integrations resulting in fewer forms and less time wasted adding basic personal information. This trend has been a long time coming. If not, this might be an indication your benefits solutions are a bit outdated and ripe for change.
Employers will continue to look for cost-saving techniques, but not at the cost of employee productivity. This trend surfaced in 2017, will prevail in 2018 and won’t be slowing down into 2019. Employer benefits costs are now measured directly against employee satisfaction, retention, and company growth.
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Disclaimer: the content presented in this article are for informational purposes only, and is not, and must not be considered tax, investment, legal, accounting or financial planning advice, nor a recommendation as to a specific course of action. Investors should consult all available information, including fund prospectuses, and consult with appropriate tax, investment, accounting, legal, and accounting professionals, as appropriate, before making any investment or utilizing any financial planning strategy.