Last week, I asked NewsDash readers what benefits challenges their companies are facing. Controlling benefits costs was also the top challenge among responding readers, with 70.6% selecting this option. Communicating the value of benefits and complying with health care benefits regulations tied for second, at 41% of votes each. Projecting the financial impact of benefits on the company ranked third, chosen by 35% of respondents.
Other choices were ranked by readers as follows:
- Negotiating the best fees and costs – 29%;
- Engaging employees in their benefits selection and monitoring – 29%;
- Implementing health wellness programs – 23.5%;
- Implementing financial wellness programs – 23.5%;
- Complying with retirement plan benefits regulations – 12%; and
- Measuring success of benefits programs – 12%.
No one selected “other,” although verbatim commenters suggested “all of the above” should have been an answer choice. Editor’ choice goes to the reader who said: “You might as well have included an “all of the above” option, because on any given day, all of these are the current challenges. Add to that the morass of internal bureaucracies, the tediousness of dealing with petty individual complaints, and the ever-present fear/paranoia accompanying being sued by disgruntled workers and/or government agencies, and you’ve pretty well got my job description.”
The ACA could be the death of us all!
How about an "all of the above" selection? It wouldn't apply to us fortunately; we're small and have very good advisers.
The biggest challenge is keeping up with what is coming down the pike!
We have a "twenty something" workforce and figuring how to talk to them about benefits is difficult - consultants haven't come up with the right "speak" so we've had to do our own research about how to get the attention of our largest employee population. If we can communicate with them, we can communicate with everyone.
The government is the problem, continuing to make it complicated to provide benefits with all the layers of notices, reporting, filing, restating, etc. that are poorly communicated to employers and made to be cumbersome needlessly. An endless array of notices alone create extra work interpreting to all employees what the notice says because of model language that challenges even lawyers to explain the actual meaning.
Obtaining valid benchmarks. Everyone uses a benchmark that makes their funds look good.
You can't polish a turd.
You might as well have included an "all of the above" option, because on any given day, all of these are the current challenges. Add to that the morass of internal bureaucracies, the tediousness of dealing with petty individual complaints, and the ever-present fear/paranoia accompanying being sued by disgruntled workers and/or government agencies, and you've pretty well got my job description....
NOTE: Responses reflect the opinions of individual readers and not the stance of Asset International or its affiliates.