Workplace benefits brokers and employers need more product flexibility

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HR departments are increasingly leaning on supplemental benefits to help attract and keep their best talent.1 Yet, when it comes to the actual product offerings, carriers hold the misconception that they are providing the necessary level of customization. However, survey data shows that in order to positively impact their clients, carriers need to be even more flexible with their offerings.

Workplace benefit products and the need for customization

According to the Wellfleet-EIS Workplace Benefits Broker Survey, offering a high level of plan customization greatly improves how satisfied brokers and employers are with their carriers.

Helping to illuminate this, is that 42% of brokers cite limited plan customization as one of the top five pain points they experience with their current carrier partners. Further, 31% of brokers say this is one of their clients’ biggest pain points. In fact, this was a top-five pain point for clients of brokers who work primarily with small (<250 employees) and large (1,500+) employer groups.

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We are seeing an increasing need to provide customized offerings that support employers’ budgetary constraints, while providing employees with robust products that help fill coverage gaps.

Jim Foley, Vice President, Product and Underwriting, Wellfleet Workplace Benefits

“The COVID-19 pandemic has helped the world to reimagine conventional work arrangements, from where and how we conduct business, to the important role benefits play in our everyday lives,” stated Jim Foley, Vice President, Product and Underwriting, Wellfleet Workplace Benefits. “We are seeing an increasing need to provide customized offerings that support employers’ budgetary constraints, while providing employees with robust products that help fill coverage gaps.”

Human Resources departments are increasingly looking to benefits beyond core medical to help attract and retain the best talent. In fact, 68% of employees state that supplemental benefits positively influenced their desire to work for and stay with an employer.2

This positive sentiment has motivated many employers to move beyond general plan designs, even if it means an increase in cost. While the expense of coverage does factor into an employer’s overall carrier decision, they ultimately want to make sure they’re delivering high value benefits to their employees. LIMRA data supports this, as research shows that a plan’s value – that combination of price and product design – can be one of the most influential carrier considerations.3

Wellness benefits enhance product offerings

It is not lost on employers that for employees to realize the value of their benefits, they need to utilize them. One way employers are helping drive utilization is by leveraging wellness incentives.2

Through wellness incentives, employees are more likely to use their benefits and engage in activities that promote better wellbeing all while offsetting the cost of their benefits. According to SHRM, by providing employees with the means to take control of their wellness, employers are creating a healthier and more productive work environment. When well-executed, an effective wellness program can help to reduce the cost of healthcare and increase employee retention.4

This is one of the reasons Wellfleet offers an optional Health Screening Benefit with its Accident, Critical Illness and Hospital Indemnity coverages. This benefit provides a cash incentive of up to $150 for the employee and each eligible family member, and includes more than 50 covered screening events, including annual physicals, flu shots, breast MRIs, colonoscopies, COVID-19 screenings or vaccinations, and more. Plus, with telephonic claims submission capabilities, benefits can be paid out within as little as one business day.5

Wellfleet Workplace plans are flexible to meet employer needs

In a world where employers and employees are increasingly cognizant of the importance of their benefits, workplace benefit plans must be as diverse and flexible as the workforce they help protect.

When designing its Accident, Critical Illness, Hospital Indemnity and Short Term Disability products, product flexibility was a core feature. Wellfleet recognized that to meet the needs of a modern workforce, it needed to offer a high level of customization that would allow clients to mix and match benefits based on what is important to their unique population.

“When you look at our Hospital Indemnity coverage, the employer can choose to offer just admission or confinement, or they could add on a whole host of related benefits, like our Initial Treatment, Surgery or Specialty Care benefits,” Foley said. “The product is so flexible that an employer could add an Accident and Critical Illness Rider to their Hospital Indemnity plan, and really create the ultimate supplemental product under a single robust plan.

“It’s this kind of flexibility that employers are really looking for.”

With products designed to optimize flexibility and affordability, Wellfleet gives brokers and employers the freedom to build a plan that is unique to their group.

Flexibility beyond coverage

Flexibility doesn’t end with personalized plan designs. That’s only the beginning. After a plan has been built, there needs to be technology and process that can effectively administer and manage the coverage. Too often, carriers design more flexibility into their products than they can administer. This is not the case at Wellfleet. The Lighthouse platform empowers proactive management of every nuance built into the plan design from end to end. At every step in the process — from quoting to enrollment, to billing and claims — processes are in place to not meet and exceed the needs of brokers and employers. Further, Wellfleet provides customized support across the workplace benefits experience by:

  • Providing a range of funding options, including employer-paid, employee-paid, contributory, and buy-up options
  • Partnering clients with a dedicated Client Manager for the life of the case
  • Crafting custom enrollment strategies to drive engagement
  • Delivering flexible billing, including self-administration, list bill, and integration with billing administrators

Customized workplace benefits

Through collaboration with brokers and employers, Wellfleet is able to develop a unique plan for each group with meaningful employee benefits at affordable rates. This ability to craft flexible and competitive workplace benefit solutions that align with customer needs is just one of the ways Wellfleet sets itself apart from the competition.

Learn more about how Wellfleet can provide customized workplace benefits solutions for your clients.

Citations

1 Rockwell, Nick. (2019). BenefitsPRO 2019 voluntary survey: Change is in the air. Accessed on August 4, 2021, from https://www.benefitspro.com/2019/05/02/benefitspro-2019- voluntary-survey-change-is-in-the-air/.

2 (2021, May 25). Leary, P., Salka, A., Stich, J. What’s Next for Workplace Benefits: Prioritized, Personalized, and Positioned for Tomorrow. Accessed on September 27, from https://www.limra.com/en/research/research-abstracts-public/2021/whats- next-for-workplace-benefits-prioritized-personalized-and-positioned-for-tomorrow/.

3 (2020, October 28). Neyer, R. How Can We Help You? Key Employer Considerations in Selecting Voluntary Benefit Carriers. Accessed on September 27, from https://www.limra.com/en/research/research-abstracts-public/2020/key-employer- considerations-in-selecting-voluntary-benefit-carriers/.

4 (2019, September 11). SHRM. Designing and Managing Wellness Programs. Accessed on September 27, from https://www. shrm.org/resourcesandtools/tools-and-samples/toolkits/pages/designingandmanagingwellnessprograms.aspx

5 Time may vary based on selected benefit and completeness of information submitted.

Wellfleet is the marketing name used to refer to the insurance and administrative operations of Wellfleet Insurance Company, Wellfleet New York Insurance Company, and Wellfleet Group, LLC. All insurance products are administered or managed by Wellfleet Group, LLC. Product availability is based upon business and/or regulatory approval and may differ among states.

©2022 Wellfleet Group, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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Wellfleet is the marketing name used to refer to the insurance and administrative operations of Wellfleet Insurance Company, Wellfleet New York Insurance Company, and Wellfleet Group, LLC. All insurance products are administered or managed by Wellfleet Group, LLC. Product availability is based upon business and/or regulatory approval and may differ among companies.

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