A benefits advisor has come up with an idea for a new service niche: helping employers compare private exchange providers.

Hager Strategic says it will join with Terry Group to offer an actuarially based private exchange program comparison service.

The consultants running the service will analyze vendors’ proposals and assumptions to estimate what kinds of financial savings the vendors’ programs might achieve, and how the programs might affect employees.

Private exchange vendors run systems that help employer plan enrollees compare coverage options on an apples-to-apples basis and sign-up plans.

But employers have had trouble comparing the private exchange programs on an apples-to-apples basis, in part because the firms that have helped employers run benefits programs are developing and marketing private exchange programs of their own, Hager says.

Hager says that, in addition to advising employers, the private exchange comparison team will help private exchange providers make their programs easier for employers to understand and evaluate.

See also: 

How private exchanges are trying to stand out

The health whisperer: Private exchanges are for real

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