As health care costs continue to rise, so has the value of voluntary benefits. Voluntary benefits allow employers to offer benefits that are attractive to employees without added cost to the company.
Many employers have expanded their voluntary benefits to compensate for increasing health care costs. Employees benefit from this strategy as well, by gaining access to a variety of additional insurance and program options.
Types of voluntary benefits
Traditional voluntary offerings include dental, vision, disability, critical illness, life and accident insurance.
Non-traditional voluntary benefits may include things like group legal plans, pet insurance, financial planning, employee discount programs, educational and adoption assistance, and identity theft protection.
Advantages of voluntary benefits for employees
Because of their cost efficiency and portability, voluntary benefits are becoming a central component of employee benefits strategies, offering high value to employees, with minimal effort and cost to the organization.
Voluntary benefits can be insurance or non-insurance products, and employees can pick and choose which ones they are interested in. Employers can offer value to employees with the following:
- Reduced group rates
- Convenience of payroll deductions
- Simplicity of multiple options all in one place
- Access to coverages they wouldn’t otherwise have
Advantages for employers
As a company, you can benefit in many ways from offering voluntary benefits. A good set of voluntary benefits can:
- Cost you little or nothing to offer
- Provide great value through cost efficiency and convenience to your employees
- Help build loyalty and retention, reducing employee turnover and associated costs
- Enhance recruitment efforts with highly valued options such as dental and disability
Communicating the value
Educating your employees on the value of voluntary benefits is key to realizing the many advantages these benefits can offer.
If your employees don’t know about the various insurance products and programs you provide, they can’t take advantage of them. More importantly, educating employees about your voluntary benefits and how they work will help employees understand (and appreciate) the full value of what you’re offering.
A single point of contact
Working with a single broker to coordinate your various benefits policies is a good idea, especially if you offer a variety of voluntary benefits.
Presenting your benefits all together as a package helps you avoid coverage gaps. Working with a single trusted advisor allows you to benefit from having a broker who knows your business inside and out, and can help guide you through the process of putting together an employee benefits strategy that does what you need it to.
At Raffa, we helped one local employer with 1400 employees:
- Become compliant with the ACA
- Clean up their company data
- Offer a voluntary benefits menu that helped them meet the individual needs of their diverse workforce
- Improve communication of their benefits package
- Strengthen recruiting and retention
How’s that for value?
Are you getting what you need?
A good broker can hand you a list of options and a pricing spreadsheet. A great benefits consultant will also help you choose which best voluntary benefits for your employee group and provide you with comprehensive materials to help educate your employees about the value of those benefits—and how to use them.
Looking to enhance your employee benefits package? Want to be a coveted employer of choice in the greater Maryland, Virginia and Washington, DC area? Get in touch with Raffa. We love this stuff! And it’s what we do for our clients every single day.
Photo by Ammily CP