One of the key components of running a successful small business is workforce retention. As an employer, when you find good people who are willing to work hard and help you achieve your goals of success, you want to give them an incentive to continue working for your company. Offering health insurance benefits is a great extra that you can provide for your employees to encourage them to stick with you for the long haul.
Unfortunately, buying health insurance for your small business can feel a bit overwhelming, especially with the high volume of information saturating the Internet. You want to make sure that you choose a plan and provider that is going to supply the kind of coverage your staff needs to live healthy lives. Here are a few steps to follow that will guide you in purchasing the best health insurance plan for your company, while avoiding the headaches of sifting through mountains of information online.
Assess Your Needs
When you start shopping for health insurance you have to assess your needs first, as this will help clarify what type of policy you and your employees need. One of the first questions to ask is who the plan will be covering. Call a meeting with your staff to find out their current health insurance situation. Ask if anyone has coverage under their spouse or through another family member. It is important to know how many people and their families will need to be covered, as this will decide the type of plan you choose and will have a major impact on the overall cost of the coverage.
Group health insurance, which is the type of insurance used by small businesses, is usually regulated by state law. It is important to keep in mind that most states will require an employer who provides health insurance for its employees to pay at least 50 percent of the monthly premium. Remember that percentage when shopping around for a quote. If you find a plan below your budget that provides great quality care, you may want to consider chipping in a bit more than the minimum 50 percent as an extra incentive.
You will also need to find out whether your employees want to pay more up front when they are well and less when they are ill, or the other way around. This is a great conversation to have during the benefitis meeting mentioned earlier. Some plans have higher annual deductibles, but come with a smaller monthly premium, while others have a higher premium but lower deductible. Once you know where the majority of your employees stand, you will want to try and find a plan that has a good balance between the deductible and the premium.
Ask your team what kind of benefits are important to them, as this will also play a critical role in determining what policy you choose for your business. Federal laws will prohibit you from asking too many detailed questions about an individual’s private medical history, but you can still ask them if they want something that provides more coverage for prescription drugs, or if they are interested only in catastrophic health coverage. This would also be a good time to discuss whether or not your team is interested in add-ons like dental and vision care.