As we prepare to close the books on 2014, now is the time to start thinking harder about 2015 — and 2016.
Small businesses face a major water shortage in my state, California; the risks and opportunities created by the drop in gas prices; the unpredictability of the American consumer; obstacles to finding, hiring and keeping the workers who can handle these rough waters; and, of course, massive changes in health benefits laws, regulations and overall market conditions.
What can benefits brokers say to your clients about planning in unpredictable times like these?
For five ideas, read on.
1. Empower employers to let their employees make the choice
One way to increase your clients’ flexibility is to help them keep employees’ health care options open.
Encourage them to use an exchange, voluntary benefits and other tools that can help them present a wide variety of options and give employees the freedom to choose the plans that best fits their needs.
2. Help your clients control their expenses
Encouraging employers to a defined contribution model — and providing a set amount of cash for health insurance each month, rather than guaranteeing that they will pay a set percentage of the health insurance premiums — can help your clients stay on budget. Your clients will know exactly how much will be spent each month on health care
See also: 5 ideas for the next health reform fight