Studies indicate differing perspectives on voluntary benefits

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October 4, 2011

According to recent studies employee and employer perspectives on voluntary benefits vary greatly. Read in today's BeAdvised about one possible explanation for the discrepancy.


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29 Comments

I couldn't help but notice a marked difference in employers' and employees' perceptions of voluntary benefits.dillon dynamometers

Posted by: my d | September 20, 2012 11:33 AM

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Posted by: my d | September 11, 2012 5:33 AM

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I don't know how the lost mandatory funding is made up but the purchasing venue will change for health insurance.Nelson Marshell

Posted by: my d | September 2, 2012 11:20 AM

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Maybe they are no aware of this and the competitive advantage that VB can be in attracting and retaining a quality workforce.EXGF

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Maybe they are no aware of this and the competitive advantage that VB can be in attracting and retaining a quality workforce.pisos de hule

Posted by: djmax 2 | August 11, 2012 5:54 PM

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My crystal ball says the individual mandate is struck down but the exchanges stay.pisos para gimnasio

Posted by: Adam J | August 10, 2012 6:50 AM

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Employers are more interested in being able to say they "offer supplemental voluntary benefits" than they are in the level of participation in such programs.pisos para gimnasio

Posted by: Adam J | August 10, 2012 6:49 AM

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Posted by: antic h | August 2, 2012 12:50 PM

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The wait is almost over to see how this new landscape plays out. My crystal ball says the individual mandate is struck down but the exchanges stay. .smarsh.com

Posted by: antic h | August 2, 2012 4:53 AM

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"Ancillary offerings" that do not garner as much significance as their other benefits.Fasflight Directory

Posted by: Cartysteve 1 | August 1, 2012 4:43 PM

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Posted by: antic h | July 25, 2012 10:20 AM

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However, if they work with a third-party provider that manages voluntary benefits administration, they can offer a menu of options without the headaches!https://www.1blick.de/

Posted by: antic h | July 24, 2012 4:58 AM

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This approach diminishes the true value of the benefits and it reduces the element of respect for the benefits that is necessary for an employer to develop any real appreciation for the programs.smarsh

Posted by: graphix z | July 20, 2012 4:50 AM

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I will consider surveying employees to determine their thoughts and preferences regarding voluntary benefits.HCG drops

Posted by: graphix z | July 19, 2012 4:22 AM

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My crystal ball says the individual mandate is struck down but the exchanges stay. I don't know how the lost mandatory funding is made up but the purchasing venue will change for health insurance.HCG drops

Posted by: graphix z | July 19, 2012 4:20 AM

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I don't know how the lost mandatory funding is made up but the purchasing venue will change for health insurance. alfombras para oficina

Posted by: antic h | July 16, 2012 2:28 AM

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I hope to see a lot of changes with this in the future. It will definitely become better if you get these changes. Black Mold Removal

Posted by: james k | June 15, 2012 2:54 PM

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That is an interesting study and I guess that it is real, too. I will read more about it and I will be back with reviews. yacht charter greece

Posted by: lucy s | June 12, 2012 3:18 AM

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There are so many aspects to this, and you have opened up another train of thought for me to examine. Thank you for your insight. Rhodes Renee

Posted by: liseyambamer l | May 5, 2012 10:37 AM

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Doug, you make a great point. The employees have always appreciated VB more than the employer could ever imagine. I feel that the prevailing method of marketing VB to employers is a major contributor to this problem. Too many agents, brokers and enrollment firms try to implement benefit systems / HR administrative systems and then use the sale of VB as the method to cover the cost of these programs. This approach diminishes the true value of the benefits and it reduces the element of respect for the benefits that is necessary for an employer to develop any real appreciation for the programs. Additionally, movement from face-to-face enrollment to self-enroll, web based, avatar, call center methods is done at the expense of the employee's awareness and understanding of the benefits (core and voluntary)provided and offered through the employer. Just because employees are becoming more computer savy doesn't mean they are more benefit savy. Employers are more interested in being able to say they "offer supplemental voluntary benefits" than they are in the level of participation in such programs. So our marketing methodology that casts voluntary benefits as simply the "way to cover the cost" of other programs ends up diluting the value proposition of the benefits and our benefit enrollment methodology moves us further and further away from the employee which reduces the understanding of the value of the benefits being offered. It seems like we are shooting ourselves in the foot.

Posted by: LEE S | November 15, 2011 2:42 PM

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I agree with Doug. I offer VEB and I always see more excitement from the EE's when they are presented our benefits. ER's need to realize that they aren't living the lives of their EE's so why are they making benefit decisions for them to whether or not their EE's "need" such or such VB?? Let the EE's have other options to fill their particular needs.

Posted by: Lori P | October 6, 2011 2:35 PM

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EB brokers and consultants need to put more focus on gathering employee feedback and making that feedback more accessible to and visible by the employer and the HR function. Using social networking might be one mechanism. Employers may not be aware that agents do not call on middle-American workers. But they want to buy isurance. (See LIMRA Research)Access to insurance is narrowing to the online sources and VB.Therefore, the employer that offers robust VB is filling a crying need of their employees. Maybe they are no aware of this and the competitive advantage that VB can be in attracting and retaining a quality workforce.

Posted by: Mike H | October 5, 2011 8:07 AM

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With the current environment and concerns over the national benefit landscape (obamacare)it is little wonder that ERs are more concerned about the benefits they offer rather than making available voluntary benefits to their EEs. After 30 years heading up Risk and Benefits management in major corporations I can tell you that administrative burdens are always at the top of the list of concerns on the inside. Those issues are always on my mind when dealing with companies large and small. How does my product offering help the ER AND the EE and how can implementation and administration be simplified? Start your approach with those issues in mind and the sales process is made much easier.

Posted by: David K | October 5, 2011 8:02 AM

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While not a proponent of the PPACA I do favor a solution that moves the distribution of health insurance out of the employer arena. It has been all consuming for employer's in so many ways. With that said, employer's should be able to offer a comprehensive platform of voluntary benefits without too much administrative burden regardless but many don't see it that way. The wait is almost over to see how this new landscape plays out. My crystal ball says the individual mandate is struck down but the exchanges stay. I don't know how the lost mandatory funding is made up but the purchasing venue will change for health insurance. Voluntary benefits should reach a much higher level of prominence as a result.

Posted by: Greg M | October 5, 2011 7:53 AM

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While our Life/AD&D program is totally voluntary, I hesitate to offer other types of voluntary benefits, such as Cancer and Critical Illness plans or supplemental STD for a couple of reasons. First, our employees are required to contribute approx. $33/week toward health benefits. I want to be sure that EEs take this coverage if needed, rather than try to substitute these "catastrophic" plans. Second, EEs need to understand benefit levels, not simply be motivated by the fear of a dreaded disease. Finally, since our company-paid STD has a carve-out for other payments, EEs would lose money if they had another disability income sourse. Nevertheless, I will consider surveying employees to determine their thoughts and preferences regarding voluntary benefits.

Posted by: Gregg D | October 4, 2011 2:45 PM

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I agree with Doug"s assessment and believe that as a result (of employees seeing the value of VEB more than employers) that insurance companies need to focus on more ways of formalizing direct relationships with employees e.g. direct billing, self enrollment, etc.

Posted by: bill V | October 4, 2011 1:23 PM

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