Do You Offer Paid Leave For Employees?

“How much paid leave will I get?” is a common question of people considering joining your company.

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Part of the perks employees are looking for when they join a company or are considering staying with an organization – is paid leave, or paid time off.

 

In most cases, companies are not obligated to offer employees paid leave, but many long-term and full-time employees feel entitled to their 10 days a year – not to mention all national holidays (such as Thanksgiving, Christmas and other federal holidays). They wouldn’t and don’t think how expensive paid leave is to an organization.

 

So what does an employer do? To keep good people, you have to offer paid leave – but it can be hard to find the money to do so, especially if you are a small company.  Fortunately, there are a couple of strategies we can recommend that can make paid leave less expensive.

 

Paid Time Off Plans

 

Instead of splitting leave into sick days, personal days and vacation days, some companies put it all into one bucket under the name paid time off (PTO). This has two benefits: it cuts down on administration, and it means that employees may be happy with less leave, since a PTO package gives them more flexibility of choosing when they are at work and when they are not.

 

Unscheduled Leave Reduction

 

While all paid leave is expensive to an organization, unscheduled leave has the biggest impact. Unscheduled leave affects all team members, with other scrambling to pick up the slack of the person absent. It can mean missed deadlines and even lost clients.  That is why many companies have an incentive plan to reduce unscheduled leave.

 

We want to make sure you know some of your options so that you can effectively communicate this to employees and offer an attractive package to your staff without too much impact on your business operations.

Highest regards,

Stacia

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Protecting Our Families

Most employees want to feel sure that if something happened to them their loved ones would still have financial stability. And yet many people don’t prioritize having sufficient coverage in place, and 2 in 5 people don’t have any life insurance in place according to Life Happens, 2016 Insurance Barometer Study, 2016.

 

This is just scary. Look around at work. Yes, right now. Look to your left and look to your right and identify 5 people. Two of those five people don’t have any life insurance and their families would be left to cover funeral costs, and figure out how to replace your co-worker’s wages if something were to happen to them. If you work in an insurance office like I do, go talk to those 5 people and ensure they are all covered for their families sake.

 

Life insurance is for the survivors. It usually brings them great peace and comfort knowing they have a little bit of financial stability – at least for a little bit.

 

Life insurance is one of those things people procrastinate about. They know they need it — but there are other pressing bills to pay, and other things to think about, and somehow it never ends up at the top of the list.

 

On top of that, there’s the question of how much to buy.

 

For both of these reasons, it’s a great thing to o er as part

of a workplace benefits package as it provides an easy route for employees to get insurance. With a small, straightforward selection of policies to choose from, employees can more easily decide which one is the right choice for them.

 

30% of Americans admit they know they need more life insurance. Factors like cost make them put off buying it according to LIMRA, 2015 Life Insurance Awareness Month, Sept. 2015.

 

Highest regards,

Stacia

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Hospitals Are Expensive

Hospital Visits Can Bring Financial Worry To Employees

We all know that a trip to the doctor or running a medical test without insurance can be costly. Imagine the cost of being hospitalized for days, or expensive testing to know what is really wrong. The cost of insurance allows you and your team to stay focused on the work at hand when life is happening elsewhere. Life always happens.

 

Since the Affordable Care Act altered the health insurance landscape, companies have been focusing more than ever on benefits that cover the areas where traditional health insurance often falls short. One of those areas is hospitalization costs.

 

The average health-plan deductible has more than doubled in the past decade — increasing from $584 in 2006 to $1,318 in 2015 according to the The Kaiser Family Foundation, Employer Health Benefits Survey, 2015.  

 

Hospital indemnity insurance can be an important way to help employees bridge this gap.

 

Fewer worries, higher productivity

When employees have financial worries, it draws their attention away from their work.

1 in 5 employees report that issues with personal finances have been a distraction at work according to PricewaterhouseCoopers, Employee Financial Wellness Survey, April 2015.

 

Think of all the little worries that come with the prospect of a hospital visit. “That test is so expensive — do I really need it? How will I pay for my next doctor’s appointment?”

Hospital indemnity insurance can help alleviate those worries.

 

Employees can use this type of insurance to help cover the cost of high deductibles, co-pays and other out-of-pocket expenses for:

  • Hospital stays
  • Surgeries
  • Diagnostic tests
  • Emergency room tests
  • Other hospital expenses

 

Keeping your employees focused at work will be way less costly to your organization than them not being there. Plus offering solutions to rising medical costs, like hospital indemnity insurance, is a way to show you care for those that work for you.

 

Highest regards,

 

Stacia

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“Brace” Yourself! A Great Addition to Your Benefits Package

Brace Yourself! Picture this: you wake up early on a bright, sunny Tuesday morning, you go to the kitchen and brew your daily cup of coffee and pop some bread in the toaster. You turn on the morning news as you do every other morning, and you sit at the table as you wait for your coffee and toast. Then you notice a strong, sharp ache in your tooth. You take some ibuprofen and hope with all your heart that it goes away, are at least becomes a duller pain, but sure enough, it doesn’t. You still go to work and carry on with your day, but you’re absolutely miserable. Your toothache seems to make everything hurt.

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You don’t want to make an appointment because it’s so ridiculously expensive.

 

Then you remember, your work has a dental insurance plan that would cover your appointment. You call and make an appointment with your dentist right away, and he can get you in. You’re so happy, and you think how you wouldn’t be able to afford an appointment if your work didn’t cover you.

 

So many people don’t have the luxury of being covered by a dental insurance plan, which forces them to overlook their dental issues. There are so many people that are quick to overlook a tooth ache and call it a minor issue, when in all reality, dental hygiene or a lack of it, has been a proven contributor of diabetes, heart disease and blindness. With this realization, many companies are beginning to offer dental coverage as part of their benefits package. In fact, ninety-six percent of employers are offering this kind of coverage to their employees, and it’s becoming a huge factor when people are considering careers.

 

As an employer, you most likely offer sick leave or a similar type of coverage, so your employees are able to get better faster and miss less work.

 

Having a dental insurance plan added to your benefits package is the same concept. With the amount of conditions linked to dental problems, your employees could miss more days than they need to because a dental package could have prevented all of it. Not good for you, not good for your employees. By covering procedures like root canals, routine cleanings, and crowns, you can save yourself and employees a lot of money with flexible plans and family coverage options.

 

What are you waiting for? Don’t miss out on a great candidate and more opportunities. Get your dental coverage package today!

Warm regards,

 

Stacia

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Coverage So Good It Looks Like an Accident

Let’s face it, accidents happen, they are an inevitable part of everyday life.

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The fact that accidents happen at all, is just plain stressful.

 

Let’s ask some important questions:

 

  1. What do you do when an accident happens?
  2. Do you have the coverage for yourself and your employees?

 

If you don’t have coverage for accidents included in your benefits package that could be detrimental to your business.

 

The most troubling part about an accident, is the unplanned factor. Which can send your employees out of work for days or weeks on end. Added to that, when hospital bills and other medical expenses are incorporated, it can quickly become overwhelming and seem like there is no hope, especially if the employee is unable to work.

 

This is where accident coverage comes in handy, extra expenses are covered and your employee can focus on getting better faster. Saving you time and money.

 

Almost forty million Americans sought medical help in 2014 for poisoning and injury. You might be thinking, you don’t need accident coverage for your employees because of the work safety policies you have in authority, but almost forty-nine percent of those forty million accidents happened at home.

What’s even more shocking, is that most people don’t have finances or a plan to cover those expenses.

 

Accidental coverage plans can help offset these expenses, along with provide coverage for initial care, transportation, surgery and follow up care your employees may need. Especially when the cost of medical care, not to mention urgent or after hours care,  has skyrocketed and is only going to continue to do so.

 

You can’t put a price on piece of mind that your protected for the inevitable.  So do yourself, and your employees a huge favor, help life go right by getting them the accidental coverage they and their families need.

Warm regards,

 

Stacia

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Know What Coverage Options Benefit You and Your Team Most

When choosing coverage for your company, there are many factors that you need to keep in mind.

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  • Should your coverage include families?
  • Should your benefits be offered to part-time workers?
  • What demographic works best for you and your team (Millenials, Baby Boomers and Generation X)?

 

It is always important to think about how the benefits you want to offer will fit with factor such as the key objectives of your business, what competitors are offering to their employees, the budget you have to work with (are you going to fully fund these coverages, share the cost with your employees, or make your employees solely responsible to fund them), and the wants of your employees. Most employee demographics today span a wide range of generations.

 

Another important thing to consider is what millenials are looking for in coverage as opposed to Generation X.

 

To explain this further, Millenials have a lot of the same values as the older generation, along with benefits that will help with the balance of work and other aspects of their lives.

 

Some of these coverages include, paid leave, retirement plans and parental leave.

 

On the other side of the spectrum, Generation X looks for an employer who will fill the gaps in regular coverages they already have.

 

They ask themselves about the “what ifs” in life, things that will require immediate attention; not later in life like Millennials. Coverages they look for include, hospital indemnity insurance, life insurance, accidental insurance, and disability insurance.

 

Once you know the coverage options you want to offer, it is important that you consider the legal matters, large mistakes can result in large penalties and greatly affect your ability to offer benefits to your employees.

 

Follow these rules, and you will come up with the perfect package to not only benefit you, but your employees and their families as well.

 

Warm regards,

 

Stacia

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The Complications Of Offering Company Benefits

With 77% of workers saying the benefits package is an important factor in their decision to accept or reject a job, it’s clear that, even for smaller companies, offering a competitive employee benefits package is a must.

 

Consider your last job interview. Did you consider the company benefit package as part of your total compensation or did you just expect that you’d be offered that?

 

The larger price tag that can come with offering some the more conventional benefits, such as health care and life insurance, and even softer benefits such as pet insurance and concierge services, can understandably be a major barrier for a number of companies.

 

There is always a way around this.

 

Voluntary benefits – at no cost to you.

 

Voluntary benefits are benefits that are offered by the employer through the workplace. To suit their budget, employers can choose whether or not they are 100% employee-funded or partially funded by both employee and employer.

 

Many employers offer them in addition to their core employee benefits package, to enable employees to enhance their coverage where they feel they need it most. Employers who are unable to offer core benefits often offer voluntary benefits to provide their employees financial protection in key areas. Either way, voluntary benefits can provide an employer a competitive advantage when it comes to benefit packages.

 

81% of employee say they buy voluntary products because of the convenience of purchasing at work.

 

Right now, voluntary benefits make sense for a lot of reasons:

  • They can help fill in the gaps in health care coverage caused by high co-pays and deductibles.
  • For a diverse workforce, the element of choice means they can handpick benefits that best suit their lifestyle, needs and budget.
  • They pay benefits regardless of any other insurance coverage employees have in place, including policies available through government health care exchanges.
  • They let you offer attractive benefits at no or low cost to your company.

 

Highest regards,

Stacia

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Keep Your Staff – Employee Perks

As you sit at your office and think about all of the other things you’d rather be doing or the things you would like to make your job or workplace more enjoyable, jot them down. I’ll be asking you in a minute for some feedback on how some employee perks could make your life better. If I don’t cover what you want, feel free to give your suggestions below.

 

When it comes to keeping and retaining talent, a few simple perks can increase productivity and overall happiness. Some only cost a few dollars, and some are completely free.

 

Think about offering such things like:

  • Break-room cookies and meeting treats
  • Free lunch once a month
  • Picnic tables outside where people can gather
  • Firepit
  • Bring your pet to work day
  • Holiday decorations
  • Casual Fridays, or a general no tie policy
  • A game room – if you can’t afford a ppo table, try a second-hand game console
  • Happy hour (for employees who are not driving!)

 

The biggest thing you could offer…and it is a big one…flexible working.

 

Flexible working means scheduling a doctor’s appointment without needing to take a sick day. It means the ability to take that evening class, or pick up the kids from school one day a week. It costs you nothing and it can mean the world to your employees.

 

Flexible working can include:

  • Working from home one or more days a week
  • Allowing employees to work a compressed work week
  • Job-sharing arrangements
  • Working a reduced schedule as part of a phased retirement plan

 

80% of employers reported an improvement in productivity as a result of a flexible working plan.


Remember you list? Look at it and tell us what we’ve missed. We’d love to know what kind of employee perks you would like (if we didn’t mention them here)?

Highest regards,

Stacia

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Millennials Want Your Investment

If you were to ask a Millennial what is their number one thing they want in a company? They would tell you a great training and development program.

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Why would this be? Well a Millennial is focusing now just on having a job now but what opportunities will allow them to move upward into leadership roles. Most millennials today are concerned about their contribution to the whole. They do want the skills to make them successful now but they are looking for workplaces that they can be loyal to today and in the future.

 

I opened this with what Millennials want but come to think of it, that is what all generations want. They want to be developed. They want to know that they belong. They want to know that they have something to contribute. They want to know that they have a home in an employer group.

 

When you give employees the space to be innovative it can create a win/win for the employee and the business.

 

Colonial Life did a survey and 78% of all employees report they would stay with their current employer if they knew there was a career path they could follow.

 

  • Have conversations. Development should be discussed annually at every performance evaluation and at every review in between
  • Ask your people what development looks like to them and how they’d like to grow.
  • Let your employees decide what skills to develop.
  • If you can, give them a budget and freedom to choose their own courses – except for underwater basket weaving of course.
  • Tell people what they can work towards – promotions, responsibility, project management
  • Reward people for taking initiative.
  • Ask your team for their suggestions and proposals.

 

Earning their loyalty will not only bring you new and innovative ideas but it will build their trust as well.

 

Highest regards,

 

Stacia

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Create A Great Workspace

In looking at your company, are you creating a great workspace for your team to come to? Most people when asked say “of course” my team and I are.

Now that we have the immediate response out the way, I’ll ask again. Are you really creating a great place to work?

This isn’t about the paint on the walls or the carpet on the floor. Any building can look nice from an aesthetics point of view but what I am referring to is are you creating the right environment from the people point of view.

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The workplace that helps employees thrive is one that is respectful of every. People communicate openly, honestly and they function from a place on integrity. Everyone is just happier and more productive.

HALT. You are thinking that this doesn’t exist. It does. You must create it and get others to buy into it.

A good workplace starts at the top. If you want others to work as a team, you must be the leader that is a team player. Leading by example is the most effective way to transform a work environment.

Have some fun! Sometimes work can just be so serious. What if you chilled out a little bit more. Others might chill as well. Celebrate birthdays, dress up for the holidays, run an occasional competition.

The other thing that must be mentioned is be aware of bullying. 27% of workers have a current or past direct experience with abusive conduct at work. Everyone has something to contribute and people want to know they are valued and that their ideas and thoughts will be valued.

You should watch for bullying and your managers should watch for bullying. Take care of the situations at  hand immediately by following the proper chain of actions that your organization has outlined. If they haven’t outlined them, do this immediately.

Highest regards,

 

Stacia

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