The Complete Guide to Creating a Competitive Benefits Package: Part Two

Jul 5, 2023

Your employee benefits package has the potential to help you recruit and retain top talent, take better care of your employees and cut costs in the process. So, what’s the key to leveraging employee benefits to serve your organization? Structure a competitive benefits package around your employees and your bottom line, all with the help of a benefits consultant.

In case you missed Part One of our series, we covered why a flexible, competitive benefits plan is crucial to your recruitment and retention efforts and a few tactics to build that package (which we’ll finish up in this article).

Here’s a quick recap of what you need to know.

4 Key Reasons Benefits Packages Improve Employee Recruitment and Retention:

  1. High-quality employee benefits improve employee health and productivity.
  2. Benefits increase attendance and presenteeism at work.
  3. Great benefits plans improve employee recruitment and retention rates.
  4. Boost employee morale and loyalty with better benefits.

The Complete Guide to Building a Competitive Benefits Package: Part One

Employee Benefits Consulting: Benefits Administration

The first step to creating a competitive benefits package that works for you is establishing a solid administrative foundation. 

Employee Benefits Consulting: Engagement + Enrollment 

Enrollment and engagement for Annual Open Enrollment are essential, but year-round support for new hires and qualifying life events is increasingly important, especially for growing companies.

Employee Benefits Consulting 

The benefits consultant you choose should teach you about the variety of available tools, options, vendors, and resources — then help you design and implement a solution that is built around you and your needs. Education about your options is a core part of successful employee benefits consulting.

We encourage you to read The Complete Guide to Building a Competitive Benefits Package: Part One before diving into Part Two.

The Complete Guide to Building a Competitive Benefits Package: Part Two

Employee Benefits Consulting: Wellness Facilitation

Wellness programs have remained top of mind for many companies working to reign in medical cost inflation and promote mental health awareness. But, a wellness program is only successful if employees are educated, engaged, and ultimately compliant with the program’s objectives. 

HR departments often need help communicating with employees due to challenges like a geographically dispersed workforce, language barriers and poor contact information. For engaged employees, it’s crucial to present a wellness program in terms that employees understand – and in a way that motivates them to take action.

When implementing this piece into a benefits package, it’s important to fully understand the challenges that can arise, especially in the communication of data between vendors required to make a wellness program successful. These include:

  • Health Plan Administrators
  • Biometric Screening Vendors
  • Wellness Platforms
  • Incentive Management
  • Health Coaches
  • On-Site Clinics

A successful Wellness Program ensures data and process alignment, maximizing an employer’s return on investment and providing the best possible employee experience. 

Here are a few additional considerations for developing a comprehensive wellness program: 

  • Does your strategy include text messaging and outbound phone calls to engage employees better? 
  • How do you measure success, and can you access the data to measure it? 
  • Does your data allow you to see drill-down reporting at the individual member level?
  • How does your incentive program integrate with departments like HR and payroll?

Where an in-house HR and benefits department may need help communicating with every employee, outsourcing can help companies successfully engage and educate employees without draining company resources.

Employee Benefits Consulting: Leave Administration 

Leave administration is necessary, especially when forming a competitive benefits package. Why? Because your people are essential, and showing them flexibility throughout their life will increase loyalty and morale. Reliable leave management systems give your employees exactly what they’re in search of – an easy, flexible way to request time off and peace of mind during difficult times or big life moments.

In addition to showing up for your people, implementing a leave administration strategy helps you maintain compliance with the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (FMLA) that states employees at firms with at least 50 employees can take up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave due to an ill family member, personal illness, or to take care of a newborn or adopted child. 

Having a process in place that manages FMLA requirements, allows your employees to rest easy (and your managers, too) knowing what to expect as their lives change. 

As part of a leave administration strategy, HR leaders like yourself must also consider employer leave policies, variations in state law, Paid Family Leave, and ADA leaves. Consistent application of policies across a large, multi-state employer can be difficult but is required by law. Repercussions for non-compliance can be stiff, making leave administration one of the biggest challenges for HR leaders. 

More than half of large employers are outsourcing leave administration, but often find what they’ve gained in compliance, they’ve lost in terms of the employee experience. Whether you decide to outsource or in-source your leave administration, it’s essential to provide your employees with a dedicated point of contact throughout their leave, a user-friendly self-service experience, and concierge-level support for challenging situations. 

An ideal leave management solution for competitive benefits will:

  • Provide a smooth process for communication between employees and management 
  • Assist with scheduling notifications to help maintain workplace productivity 
  • Offer a sophisticated system that is flexible to your benefit services offerings and unique needs 
  • Maintain compliance with federal and state FMLA and PFL regulations and consistency 
  • Assist in continued training for the HR and benefits teams 

While this is not an exhaustive list, leave administration is a critical aspect of a competitive employee benefits strategy. From helping your company close compliance gaps to providing an employee with support during a difficult time, a successful leave administration system is a win for both employers and employees. 

Employee Benefits Consulting: Diabetes Management & Reversal

Diabetes has long been a concern for employers in terms of health and well-being, but employers struggle to combat its prevalence, especially within certain geographic and demographic groups. More than 100 million Americans have either diabetes or prediabetes, according to the CDC, and that’s a problem that directly impacts employers across the country. According to the American Diabetes Association’s Economic Costs of Diabetes in the U.S., diabetes costs $327 billion per year, and it is more expensive to care for an employee with diabetes than one without it. 

Prediabetes and diabetes continue to be a significant health challenge for your employees and a major factor in your overall healthcare costs. Meaning, a successful employee benefits program should place emphasis on type 2 diabetes prevention, management, and reversal. 

By offering programs that help your employees to attain and maintain a healthy weight, you can help them clinically reverse type 2 diabetes without medication. This allows them to be happier, healthier, and more productive at work while significantly reducing their associated healthcare costs.

What to consider when implementing a diabetes management and reversal program: 

  • A program designed for reversal rather than just management
  • Individual coaching and continuous support
  • Measures success in terms of outcomes – not just compliance

As you continue to support your employees, whether diabetic or prediabetic, you should make a decision that will consider both your care costs and their health in the long run. By helping your employees better manage their health, you can improve their lives and reduce overall healthcare spending. 

Employee Benefits Consulting: Part-Time Benefits 

One other consideration for a competitive benefits package is part-time benefits — and they are very important. Whether your part-time workforce is made up of Gen-Z, Millennials, Boomers, or Gen-Xers, you can positively impact recruiting, retention, and morale by offering a robust employee benefits package. 

In today’s historically tight labor market, offering benefits to part-time employees will help you stand out amongst the competition. What does a great part-time benefits program look like? Similar to a full-time employee benefits program, part-time programs need to include strategic employee engagement, year-round enrollment and support, comprehensive benefits administration, and creatively designed products that match employee needs and budgets.

Offering a part-time program does come with some unique challenges, like managing direct billing instead of payroll deductions and managing changes between full-time and part-time status. With optimal communication and products designed with a part-time employee in mind, a strong part-time benefits offering can be rewarding for employees and provide employers with a competitive advantage.

Now, how can you take all these pieces and form a benefits package? With the right benefits consultant, it’s a lot easier than you might think. 

We believe that the key to competitive benefits packages relies on being there for everyone. Not every benefits solution is a good fit for your employees or your organization. Cookie-cutter benefits packages are not good enough. You deserve out-of-the-box benefits solutions. It’s essential to work with a provider who is flexible enough to cater to the needs of your business and your employees. 

If you’re interested in exploring how we can help you enhance and streamline your HR and benefits programs with any of the services mentioned, we encourage you to reach out to our team for a complimentary consultation today.


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