In recognition of National Small Business Week, we’ve put together some tips to help your company grow. Read on to learn how you can make positive steps toward putting your small business in position to thrive.
The health care choices you make today can impact your profit margin for years to come. Your business can save significantly by using a little research and creativity to pick one of many cost-effective health plans available to you.
Businesses with 50 to 99 employees face unique challenges when it comes to picking cost-effective health plans. According to a Fox Business report, these firms have too many employees to qualify for government subsidies, but you can still save money while providing your employees with affordable, compliant health care plans. Here are a few options that can help.
Defined Contribution Plans
Your business may not be able to afford plans with low deductibles, but you can still offer affordable basic plans while giving your employees the option of purchasing a more extensive plan if they shoulder the rest of the expense. With a defined contribution plan, the employer agrees to pay a specific amount into an employee’s health coverage. Employees can then pay the difference if they want a plan with more options or a lower deductible. The Journal of Accountancy suggests that small- or medium-sized businesses going this route should offer five or six health-plan options.
Self-Insured Health Plans
A self-insured plan is another cost-effective health-plan option for small businesses. The plan sets up a predefined budget for an employer’s health care costs for the coming year. You’ll earn a credit from the insurer if your business’s health costs stay below budget. If you go over budget, you’ll have to cover the extra amount. If you’re worried that one employee will suffer health problems and push you over budget, you can add stop-loss insurance protection just in case.
Different Family Benefits
It may sound harsh, however one way to manage costs is to offer different coverage to dependents than full-time employees receive. The Journal of Accountancy explains that the Affordable Care Act requires that health care plans cover dependents, but it doesn’t require that dependents get the same low-cost premiums. In addition, the ACA doesn’t require coverage for spouses.
Offering a good health plan is just part of the battle. You can also save money by promoting the improvement of your employees’ health. According to The Wall Street Journal, initiatives such as wellness programs, nursing hot lines, or disease-management programs aimed at helping those with chronic illnesses can help cut costs while still providing for employees.
Small- to medium-sized businesses need to get creative when it comes to offering cost-effective health plans. You have to stay profitable while avoiding penalties. Choosing one of the options above will help limit how much your company spends each year while also investing in the health of your employees.
Stephanie Dwilson has extensive experience providing expertise on topics including health, law and marketing. She’s a science journalist published by Fox News, a marketing expert and an attorney with expertise in personal injury law. She’s also a small business expert featured by Businessweek and Millionaire Blueprints magazine and has worked as a marketing consultant for ministries and as a PR lead for one of the largest churches in America.