A reigning question of the moment is how the employee benefits market will change once the full effects of health care reform are felt in 2014. Will employers continue to offer coverage? Will they keep plan offerings in place, but share an increasing amount of the cost burden with their staff? Or will they turn their employees over to the shiny new health insurance exchanges?
These are all questions of value vs. cost. In the short-term, employers will certainly lessen expenses by dropping health care plans. In the long-term, though, how many valuable employees will they lose with a less attractive benefits package?
Across the board, employers may not realize just how important benefits are to employee satisfaction and retention. A recent study revealed that, post economic downturn, employees place a greater value on their benefits package when evaluating their overall happiness at work. Where employers perceived health care benefits to be valued by just 59 percent of employees, 75 percent said that health benefits were a key component to job satisfaction, ahead of other desirable qualifiers such as advancement opportunities, retirement benefits and company culture.