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Healthcare a Key to Retention of Employees

January 23, 2023

By Anthony Kaylin, courtesy SBAM Approved Partner ASE

A new survey by Forbes found that 8% of respondents left a job they liked to seek better health insurance. Another 20% decided to get a full-time job instead of a part-time job so they could get coverage. 31% of respondents with employer-sponsored insurance said they stayed with a job they disliked for the company’s health insurance. 

The Forbes Advisor survey included responses from 2,000 American adults conducted online from October 28 to November 1.

The survey also found that with inflation, employees are making monetary decisions as opposed to benefit richness decisions.  23% of respondents said they will choose a plan with a lower premium due to inflation. 11% said they will select one with a lower deductible, and 7% said they will use a health savings account to help with inflationary pressure.

Knowing how inflation is affecting so many Americans, payers should work with employers to offer multiple health insurance plan options, if possible,” Les Masterson, Forbes Advisor deputy editor and insurance analyst stated. “That means offering plans with high deductibles and lower premiums with a health savings account as well as plans with higher premiums and lower deductibles. Health plan benefit design isn’t a one-size-fits-all. Some members would prefer paying less upfront while others may rather a plan with higher premiums but lower out-of-pocket costs. Letting people decide between those and others may help with both member and employee satisfaction.”

For many ASE member employers, the majority (63%) offer two or three policies for employees.  Another 16% offer four or more policies.  These employers have opportunities to create more flexible policies to fit the needs of the employees, especially new workers who may not need a great variety of health benefits.  On the other hand, employers may find that standardizing benefits within industries and over industries to control costs, yet provide benefits, could cause employees to think twice about switching jobs.

Another study showed that financial pressures are primary with the new workforce.  One-third of millennial respondents and 46% of Gen Zers reported that they have switched employers since the start of the pandemic, compared with just 29% of all workers. These generational employees would more likely switch jobs more frequently because of earning potential than workers as a whole.  The study was from Morning Consult.  It was an online survey from September 29 to October 1 among a national sample of 4,796 self-identified adults, including 477 Gen Zers, 1,458 millennials, 1,223 Gen Xers, and 1,430 baby boomers. It also included 2,356 employed adults.

Moreover, because of inflation and greatly rising costs of housing and food, these workers are more likely to work a second job.  49% of millennials and 48% of Gen Zers in the survey said they do not believe that a salary is going to be enough to achieve their financial goals.  But this issue today covers all employees, regardless of generation.  70% of all workers surveyed stated that they have pursued or considered pursuing gig work to supplement their income over the past year, including 81% of Gen Zers and 77% of millennials. 

HR and CFOs need to reconsider their pay and benefit structure to reduce turnover and allow for internal growth within an organization.  Benefits should be harmonized to employee needs, yet costs must be contained, a trend that was long discussed and long coming. 

Moreover, career growth needs to be re-examined from a career ladder to career lattice approach.  For many organizations, it is a heavy lift and a cultural shift of the organization.  Leadership needs to buy in to this approach, which is difficult.  Therefore, the approach to employee retention must be a multifaceted approach as opposed to piecemeal.  Engage employees and the change to a new approach may be friction-free.

SBAM offers a full suite of health, life, dental and disability insurance. Learn more!

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