Archive for the ‘Human Resources’ Category

“NO ONE TOLD ME!” or “I DIDN’T KNOW THAT!”

Employees spend less time reviewing their benefit options than they spend preparing for a Holiday dinner (survey results showed 1.6 hrs for Thanksgiving)

According to a research survey conducted by the Guardian Life Insurance company, almost one-half of working Americans spend either no time or less than 1 hour reviewing their benefits each year. This survey was conducted following the Fall workplace open-enrollment season. Some 71% of survey respondents said it is “easy” or “very easy” to select employee benefits while only 21% say it is “difficult” or “very difficult”.

What is extremely alarming is the lack of knowledge by the employee when questioned about the benefit selected during the enrollment process. 70% of employees surveyed said they know the difference between group and voluntary individual life insurance. Yet over 55% did not realize that upon termination of employment they would lose their group coverage. Over 48% did not realize employer-paid disability income benefits are taxable at time of claims payment. Over 68% did not know if their disability coverage was effective while on the job. Over 40% did not realize they had guaranteed issue only within a specified time period. 60% of employee respondents ranked “financial security if a wage earner can no longer work do to disability or a serious illness” as important. Only 21% felt their employers were addressing these concerns, despite the fact that more than two-thirds of all employers offer short or long term disability benefits. Apparently, employees simply do not make the connection.

The employer and the benefit broker need to understand that to make employee education effective, we need to keep it personal. We need to schedule “Time out for Benefits” not just once a year for a “herd them through open enrollment” but throughout the year with information provided by the broker and the employer. Education throughout the year allows the employee to feel more comfortable and knowledgeable about the benefits you the employer are providing. Also education, prior to open enrollment time, produces an employee who knows what they want or need for their families financial well-being.

Next issue: “Ideas to provide a solution to employee education of employer provided benefits”

Dan Oakland, Principal of Fringe Benefit Resources, is proud to be endorsed by MHA Ventures, Montana Automobile Association, Idaho Automobile Association, Northwest Montana Physicians Group and the Montana Health Network.

Enrollment Process Heightens Benefit Value, Unlocks Success in Hospital Talent Search

In today’s tight labor market, providing health care employees with a clear understanding of the value of their benefits package is crucial. It could sway an employee’s decision about whether to change jobs if he or she recognizes the true value of benefits versus a competitor’s salary

PAPERLESS ENVIRONMENT
One of the top benefits priority among hospitals is to reduce paper pushing, as well as the errors associated with keying in employee information, since their HR departments typically are understaffed and lack enough time to devote to enrollment. HR departments are being asked to become more efficient in attracting and retaining employees, and ultimately, improving bottom-line results through shifts to more voluntary or high-deductible options. It’s not only enrollment selection but also management, and the only logical direction seems to be automation. From a strategic standpoint, HR can spend more of its valuable time on having the most effect on the organization as a whole.

PERSONAL TOUCH
An important value the HR departments can receive from their online enrollment partner is that employee data can be directly imported into their payroll system, not only for open enrollment but also year-around management of new hire enrollment, life status event changes, etc. Building benefit statements into the enrollment flow is also a valuable service that continually reinforces the critical message of just how much the employer spends on benefits and salary as part of a total-compensation approach.

MATTER OF TRUST
Fringe Benefit Resources and American Fidelity (with several of their own endorsed products) are among a select group of vendors that market benefits endorsed by the American Hospital Association (AHA) and ASHHRA. Representing products that have met standards for quality, stability, dedication to health care and customer service provides these vendors with added credibility. And, the AHA works only with vendors that understand the nuances of hospital employers and employees.