Changing brokers and benefit plans can require an overwhelming amount of work for your company. From determining who to use next, to deciding what to include in your coverage, to educating your employees about their new plan, it’s no wonder companies often opt to just stay with their current plan — even if they’re unsatisfied.

Looking for a broker and a plan that suits your unique organizational needs and desires doesn’t have to be a dreaded task among your leadership. Instead, ease your transition and start with a solid, honest research base.

 Before you start looking, ask yourself the following questions to make an informed decision for your company and employees.

1. What is your total annual benefits spend, including employer funding, employee contributions and employee out-of-pocket, associated with current medical coverage?

Skyrocketing healthcare costs aren’t just a drain to your company, but to your employees, too. Before looking for a new plan, perform a full audit of how much you and your employees spend each year on health insurance coverage. This will help you shape a sustainable, tangible budget you’d like to stay within while you shop for new brokers. Working with a broker committed to a transparent fee model is your best bet in maintaining a healthy budget.

2. What is your total annual employer and employee liability to benefits, including projected funding and unfunded liabilities?

While evaluating your yearly benefit spend, also consider the annual financial responsibilities in your benefit package for both you as the employer and your employees. Work with a broker who will help you lower these costs while still providing high-quality benefits that meet your needs.

3. What is your monthly fixed cost per employee related to essentials like medical and prescription coverage, administrative services and tech integration?

Finding a benefit plan that integrates well with company technology and provides adequate educational and administrative resources for your employees can be a challenge. These are expenses on top of what you’re paying for actual employee coverage, so make sure to factor these into your budget while looking.

4. What is your average annual variable claims cost per employee related to medical and prescription coverage? 

New expenses pop up each year in employee health care. Find the average of the annual variable claims costs per employee for the previous 24 months so you have a reasonable estimate of how much you spend each year under your current plan and what you’d like this figure to be in your new plan.

5. What are the average annual rebates per employee associated with prescription fills covered by your plan?

Be careful about your annual rebates. Unfortunately, this can be an area of corruption in the health insurance industry. Make sure you’re fairly receiving the rebate amount you should from your annual prescription expenditures, and your rebate aggregator and vendors don’t itemize rebates as fees to take the money from you.

6. How do you currently make benefit plan evolutions? Who is involved in final decisions?

While input from your broker is certainly important, they don’t have the same intimate knowledge of your company that you do. Make sure you’re not relying fully on your broker, or leaving all the decisions to your HR team and having leadership weigh in after the fact. Gather and utilize data from your entire team in this process, and work closely alongside your broker to choose a plan that fits your needs.

7. How do you incorporate employee input and value into the benefit evolution equation?

Remember, employers offer benefits so their workforce feels cared for and valued. What better way to show your employees you care about their health insurance needs than to include them in the search process? 

Consider how — or if — you’ve used employee feedback in the past regarding benefits, and commit to using it this time. Better yet, work with a broker that prioritizes employee input and has special data-mining processes to access this information.

8. If significant savings could be accomplished while offering a similar benefits package, would you most likely reinvest these dollars into improved benefits, re-appropriate the savings elsewhere in the budget, take these savings as additional profits or blend two or more options?

Since the second-highest operating expense of companies each year is typically employee benefits, it’s likely you’re looking for a new broker to save money. 

Work with your CFO to determine how you’d potentially allocate these saved dollars to improve and strengthen your organization and keep these investments in mind while evaluating new quotes. Especially consider how current overspending on benefits negatively impacts your company valuation and limits your access to capital.

9. Do you currently incentivize employees associated with benefits administration when projected performance goals are achieved or exceeded?

When it comes to benefits and switching brokers, your HR department is saddled with the most work. Do they receive fair compensation for hours worked and effort exerted? Think about how you’ll reward those leading this charge for the rest of your company.

Still Struggling? We’re Here to Help!

There’s a broker who can not only help you answer these questions but specifically build your quote on the data acquired. Meet Waypoint Benefit Solutions. We use data-driven results to help you be more competitive in your marketplace and provide solutions to your benefits problems. 

Our innovative employee surveys, transparent pricing structure and focus on your individualized needs make us the perfect fit. Contact us to schedule an introductory call today!