Outlined below are several employee benefits trends that we're currently seeing and can expect to continue into 2017:
1. Fewer small businesses are offering employee health insurance plans.
While 63 percent of small businesses (less than 50 employees) offered health insurance in 1999, this number has dwindled to 53 percent in 2016.
2. The majority of employees are enrolled in health insurance plans with a deductible of $1,000 or more.
High deductible plans are becoming the norm. While in 2006, only 16 percent of employees were in high deductible plans, this figure has transitioned to 65 percent in 2016.
3. Most businesses extend health insurance coverage to an employee's spouse.
This has been the case for many years, and we can continue to expect that most employers will offer this in 2017. An exception to this could be if the employee's spouse has the option to receive benefits from his or her place of work. In 2016, only 13 percent of employers denied coverage for a spouse in this scenario.
4. More companies are including telehealth visits in employee benefits.
Through a telehealth visit, an employee can interact with a doctor using digital technology rather than physically visiting the doctor's office. It's a great solution to be able to give employees access to specialists that are located a long distance away, and it also can help to minimize the time that employees spend outside of the office at doctor visits. It's estimated that 9 out of 10 employers will incorporate telehealth visits into employee benefits offerings in 2017.
5. More employers are offering consumer-driven health plans.
This goes hand-in-hand with the anticipated increase in high deductible health plans. Today's employees want the ability to pick and choose their benefits, and some of the more effective ways that companies are helping their employees do this will combating the higher costs of consumer-driven health plans is through providing--and even funding--health savings accounts and/or health reimbursement arrangements.
6. More employers are using company-wide wellness programs to encourage a healthy workplace.
Over the past few years, we've seen a number of employers introduce corporate wellness programs in an effort to encourage a healthy workplace. While Millennials are quick to jump on board with this incentive, many organizations have challenges with getting all employees to participate in a corporate wellness program. In the coming year, employers should continue to find creative solutions to encourage more participation in a company wellness program.
It's to your advantage to stay up-to-date with the latest employee benefits trends. Please contact us at Summerlin-Roberts to learn more about how you can stay ahead of the curve with these trends, which can help you to attract and retain top talent.