Voluntary Benefits are a great way to compensate for rising health care costsAs 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 consider expanding their voluntary benefits to compensate for employees’ increasing health care costs. Employees benefit because they have a variety of insurance and other program options conveniently available in one place.
Types of Voluntary Benefits
A few traditional voluntary offerings include dental, vision, disability, critical illness, life and accident insurance. Nontraditional voluntary benefits may include group legal plans, pet insurance, financial planning, employee discount
programs, educational and adoption assistance, and identity theft insurance.
Advantages of Voluntary Benefits for Employees
Because of their cost efficiency and portability, voluntary benefits are becoming a central component of many companies’ overall benefits strategies, offering high value to employees, all with minimal effort and cost to the company. Voluntary benefits can be either insurance or non-insurance products presented to employees to pick and choose from for elective purchase. Employers can offer value to employees with the following:
- Reduced group rates
- Convenience of payroll deductions
- Boost to work-life balance (from such programs as educational assistance)
- The ease of having multiple options all in one place
Your company 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
- Aid recruitment efforts because certain benefits, such as dental and disability, are highly valued
- Help build loyalty and retention, reducing employee turnover and associated costs
Communication Is Key
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 the full value of what you’re offering.
A Single Broker
Working with a single broker to coordinate your various benefits policies, especially when you decide to offer a variety of voluntary benefits, is a good idea. When all your benefits are presented together, you can avoid coverage gaps and take advantage of a broker who knows your business thoroughly and can help guide you through the process of choosing the best voluntary benefits for your employee group. A good broker can also provide you with comprehensive materials to help educate your employees on the voluntary benefits you offer.