Employee Benefit Trends for 2016

23 Sep

The healthcare industry remains in flux, with new laws looming on the horizon and new technology is offering companies more tools and resources than ever before. Many companies are wondering what the landscape will be like heading into 2016.

Below are key challenges we see for 2016 and the various strategies being employed to meet them.

1. The cost of healthcare
2. Managing compliance
3. Engaging employees to become smarter healthcare consumers
4. Maximizing investments in Human Resources technology

The Upcoming Enrollment Season

Last year, people were in a frenzy thinking their health plans were going to change because of changes brought on by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). This year, less disruption is expected, and consumers and companies alike should be focusing their attention on maximizing benefits from their current plans. The exception is companies that have between 50 and 99 employees. The move to “small group” taking effect because of ACA is forcing many of these groups to consider early renewals so they can maintain their “large group” status for another year. Employers who do move to “small group” plans will likely see significant changes to their benefit designs and premiums.

Continued Rise in Telehealth and Decision Support Tools

Two key concerns are the rising cost of healthcare and the prohibitive cost of specialty pharmaceuticals. To meet these challenges, we expect to see a sharp increase in telehealth options and healthcare decision support resources and tools in the coming year.

  • Last year, 48 percent of employers offered telehealth options to employees
  • This year, the number of employers offering telehealth jumped to 74 percent
  • An estimated 80 percent of employers are expected to be offering telehealth by 2018

Consumer Driven Health Plans

Last year there was a 50% increase in the number of companies offering consumer-directed health plans. This year, the numbers have leveled off. Some see 2016 as the calm before the storm, however.

One looming concern is the 40% excise tax, also called the Cadillac Tax, which in 2018 will charge companies that fail to cut costs in certain plans. Companies offering multiple plans fear that at least one will trigger the tax, and the hope is that the excise tax will be repealed. If it isn’t, we would expect consumer-directed health plan enrollment to increase by around 25% in the coming year.

A Focus on Employee Education

Employees often opt for the most expensive plans offered, assuming that price directly correlates to quality rather than evaluating options based on their needs. To maximize the value of employee benefits and help employees make better decisions, 40% of employers say they’ll have new and improved networks for employee education and communication channels by 2018.

Healthcare Solutions from Presidio Benefits

If your company is looking to control healthcare costs, ensure compliance, empower employees, and optimize technology, come to Presidio Benefits. 2016 is looking to be a challenging, but promising year in the healthcare landscape, and we’ll continue to work directly with your team to find the best strategies to meet the challenges in 2016 and beyond. Visit our homepage for more information on our services.

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  • I have extensive experience in working with benefits advisors and can unequivocally say Presidio is excellent!  Alan and his team have done a great job for Ikanos.  They are effective at both the strategic and tactical levels.  As advisors, they are knowledgeable on trends  and proactively engage in a process so we can  plan future steps.  They have done a good job for us in the traditional benefits broker roles of  negotiating rates and changing carriers when necessary.  In addition to the higher  level and strategic functions, they are an extra pair of hands to our lean benefits department in helping us and our employees navigate when  issues, such as claim administration,  arise with a  particular carrier.  We have had a great five year plus relationship with Presidio!

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    - Teresa Barnhart, Director of Administrative Services, NagraStar
  • Presidio Benefits Group has always, and continues to, exceed our expectations for client support, while being strategic, yet practical – a true and trusted partner when tackling the many challenges of offering a comprehensive, competitive, compliant, yet cost-effective, employee benefits package. They are a true extension of our HR department, proactively helping us navigate the ever-changing landscape of employee benefit and wellness programs.

    - Cori Ekman, Vice President, Human Resources, Nagra Kudelski
  • Matt Coan and his team have provided us with outstanding client service. They have a great understanding of our needs and exhibit pro-active leadership in dealing with carriers, our employees’ claims issues and the increasingly difficult areas of compliance.  This is our first year in a self insured “captive” and they have been our partner throughout the process.  There are many insurance brokers offering a variety of services, but there only a few that are true professionals like the team at Presidio Benefits Group.  They don’t just show up once a year at renewal time, but are professionals that support our needs throughout the plan year.

    - Cheryl Rankin, Director of Human Resources, DGA
  • Presidio makes the complicated world of benefits easy. This is important because the benefits we offer our staff are such a critical part of retaining outstanding talent, and the landscape is always changing. I can count on Presidio to provide me with accurate and timely information with warmth and expertise.

    - Gregg Solimine, Human Resources & Administration Manager, The Women's Foundation of California
  • We have been working with PBG since 2009, they really have been great partners helping us navigate the ever-changing healthcare landscape.  We genuinely try to offer the best benefits program we can to our employees and their families, PBG gets this and works with us to achieve that.

    - Carolynn Smith, Associate, Forell/Elsesser
  • We have worked with Presidio Benefits Group for over 10 years, we are solicited by brokers all year round for our business, I wouldn’t trust our employees’ benefits to anyone but the Presidio Benefits Group. They are always very quick to respond to our needs and they always go above and beyond to solve individual employee needs and resolve any carrier issues we might have! Alan Ikeya and his team are the very best at what they do!

    - Cheryl Maclennan, Human Resources/Sales & Marketing, Pool Covers, Inc.
  • We have been partnering with the Presidio Benefits Group for over three years and our experience with them has been outstanding.  Presidio is such a strategic partner as they really think outside the box to ensure we have a comprehensive and competitive benefits package which has contributed to our ability to attract and retain highly talented staff.  Not only is the Presidio’s top-notch team very ethical, personable and professional, they have an in depth knowledge of the benefits landscape and proactively support us in the areas of compliance, mitigating increasing healthcare costs, implementing best practices and navigating the complexities of benefits laws (e.g. ACA).  Hands down, Presidio is the best benefits broker around.

    - Christa Brothers, Vice President, Human Resources, Earthjustice
  • When I joined Gild, I knew it was time to reassess the effectiveness of our Professional Employer Organization (PEO) relationship. Presidio helped me build a strategy to move benefits in-house and less than two months after our initial meeting, Gild had a comprehensive benefits program up and running. I couldn’t have done it without the Presidio team. Their level of care and attention to me and my employees makes them a true partner.

    - Brittany Brown Ceres, VP of Employee Success , Gild, Inc.
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