In 2015, 95 percent of companies expect to retain their employer-subsidized health care coverage in their benefits packages, but only 25 percent of the companies believe they will offer such coverage in another decade.
So concludes Unum in a new report, “Benefits Buyers Study: New perspective on balancing employer costs and employee protection.” The report draws on industry research and Unum data to explore the top challenges affecting the broader benefits market and how these play out for employers and employees.
The study attributes the anticipated decline in employer-subsidized health care coverage to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), which has engendered much uncertainty among HR professionals. Employers have “struggled” to remain compliant with PPACA while also paying for additional costs connected with the legislation.
“Many employers continue to wrestle with the pay-or-play decision and may decide that it’s more cost-effective to pay the penalties,” the report states. “If they decide not to play, some of their employees may be able to find comparable, affordable coverage on the public exchanges.”
“But some employees may not be able to find adequate coverage,” the report adds. “A company’s decision not to offer benefits can also hurt employee morale and recruiting efforts.”