One of the best ways to attract better employees is by offering group health insurance. Unfortunately, providing high quality health insurance usually means that your business is going to pay a lot for premiums. With premium prices soaring, many small businesses are struggling to continue offering group health insurance to their employees. In fact, according to the US Chamber of Commerce, of the more than 45 million Americans who are uninsured, 60% are employed by small businesses. If you want satisfied, productive, and healthy employees, but are struggling to provide the health insurance options they’re looking for, here are some tips to reduce your group costs.
Get More Employees to Participate in Your Plan
In order to get a good price on group health insurance, make sure that as many of your employees are participating in your plan as possible. If you’re in the financial position to do so, you can even consider hiring more employees – the more employees that you cover, the lower your premiums will be. How will your premiums be lower? Well, insurance companies face large risks for every employee that they have to cover, so having a smaller pool of employees paying into the plan means that they are taking on more risk. However if you have a larger amount of employees paying into the plan, then there will be less risk for the insurance company, and they will be able to offer you a better deal.
Reduce Coverage: Exclude Dental & Vision
Reducing the amount of coverage that you offer is a simple way to keep your insurance costs low. You can do so by cutting dental and vision from your plan and having your employees decide whether they would like to purchase their own dental and vision coverage. These costs will come out of your employees pockets, but eliminating these plans will help to lower your premium costs and save you money.
Consider Switching Plans
The most common way to control the costs of your group insurance plan is by switching plans. Consider switching to a high-deductible health plan (HDHP). Doing so will increase your employees’ deductibles, but it will also reduce the cost of their premiums, and your premium contributions. Another route you can take is switching to a more cost effective plan with a smaller network, such as an HMO.
Take Control of Prescription Drug Costs
Medications are necessary, but they can be expensive. There are ways, though, to save on prescription drug costs in your plan by:
- Having a plan that mandates a generic substitution for any medication that has one.
- Having a limit on coverage, which will allow you to save on dispensing fees.
- Encouraging your employees to shop at less expensive pharmacies, use money-saving apps, or request 90-day supplies of their medications.
- Checking your plan’s drug formulary, and making sure that it includes a large range of drugs in the lowest tier. These generic, lower cost drugs will most likely be covered 100%.
Keep Your Employees Healthy
The healthier your employees are, the lower your insurance costs will be. Offer a wellness program, which could include perks like fitness membership stipends, free flu shots, help quitting smoking, and cancer screenings. This is a cheap and easy way to not only make your own employees happier and more productive, but also a great way to save money in the long run.
Provide An HSA
If you decide to switch to a high-deductible health plan (HDHP), consider offering a health savings account (HSA) alongside it. HSAs are only available with a qualified high-deductible health plan, and will allow your employees to contribute tax-exempt dollars to a fund that can only be used for medical expenses. These funds also accrue tax-free interest and roll over each year, so employees will have money for healthcare when they really need it. The benefits for you? Tax breaks for you if you choose to contribute to your employees’ HSAs, and a healthcare plan that is more attractive to your employees.
Find A Good Agent
Health insurance is complex. But if you have a good insurance agent, they can help you shop around for plans from different providers and help you to reduce your health insurance costs. Many insurance agents charge a fee for their services, but not EZ. We will provide you with one dedicated agent who will navigate through all available plans and provide you with instant, accurate quotes. All of our services are free – our mission is to help you find an affordable plan that provides great coverage. To compare group insurance quotes in minutes, simply enter your zip code in the bar above, or to speak to one of our agents, call 888-998-2027.