Tips from a vision benefits pro: Benchmarking your vision plan

Finding the “right talent” is the number one challenge for CEOs in 2019, according to a recent report.1 In my previous posts (Tip 1 and Tip 2) we discussed how vision insurance could serve as a key differentiator to help you win the war for talent. With that mind, you want to make sure your plan is competitive with others in your industry.

Tip 3: Benchmarking your vision plan

How does your plan stack up? Here are some quick stats:

Plan design:

The most popular plan design includes a $10 exam copay, $25 lens copay, and a frame allowance of $130 or above.2


The cost of vision insurance varies by plan design, state and employer size but the majority of vision plans with eye exam and eyeglasses or contact lens coverage cost $10 or less per individual per month.2 Just think that’s the price of only two Starbucks┬« lattes a month.

Who pays?

  • 13% employer pays all the premium
  • 31% employer partially pays and the employee pays the balance
  • 51% employee pays all (voluntary)3
  • 5% employer does not offer vision

What’s important to employees?

Access to coverage:
A full 87% of employees say they’d be more likely to stay at their current company if it offered high-quality vision benefits.4

Network mix is a driver of employee satisfaction:
Being able to see the doctors they want and shop for frames where they want is important. Surprisingly, 53% of employees want to use their vision benefits during weekdays. 18% shop on weeknights, 25% shop on Saturdays, and just 4% on Sundays.5

More than half (62%) see independent eye doctors, 34% go to retails chains and 4% take advantage of other places to use their vision benefits, including fast-growing array of online retail options.2

If you don’t offer a plan yet, it’s time to consider adding vision. 85% of adults want vision care coverage6, and 91% of employees view vision benefits as important or very important.7 The benefits of offering vision are clear, and with so many possible funding arrangements, it’s a perfect time to add a vision plan to your benefits package.

For more information on vision benefits, reach out to your broker, benefits consultant or insurance plan carrier.


1 The Predictive Index CEO Benchmarking Report, 2019
2 Anthem 2018 Data
3 PWC Health and Well-being Touchstone Employer Survey, June 2018
4 Vision Monday, “Evidence Links Vision Benefits to Healthy Vision Habits, NAVCP Reports”, 2016
5 Consumer Study Commissioned by EyeMed, 2010
6 Vision Watch Vision Correct Standard, 2012
7 Vision Monday, dba Newsletter 2018


John Thorp is Staff Vice President of Vision Services at Anthem, Inc., and is a past board member of the National Association of Vision Care Plans (NAVCP). He is committed to improving the lives of the people Anthem serves through the integration of Blue View Vision with Anthem Whole Health Connections.