My latest article is up at Workforce.com, entitled "7 Ways to Reduce Benefit Costs Without Decreasing Coverage", so go out and take a look if you have a chance. Here's the intro:
"By now you’ve read the latest yin and yang of benefits news. Health care premium increases rose at their lowest rate in eight years. But the increase is still more than 6 percent, and that’s still more than twice the rate of inflation. It far exceeds the average annual increase (3.6 percent) for employees in the U.S.
With that data in mind, the reality remains the same. Your benefit cost structure is increasing, and it remains difficult to shift some, much less all, of the increasing costs to employees. The crunch continues, and you’re in the middle. Your CEO is looking to you, the HR pro, to squeeze dollars out of the overall plan structure without causing a riot. So much so that she walks into your office and asks the following question:
"You follow these things: What can we do to reduce our benefit costs without dropping coverage levels significantly or increasing employee contributions?"
Yikes! That’s a credibility call for HR—an opportunity to be at the table. Or to clean the table after the meeting if you don’t have a meaningful response."
Click over to get my cliff notes for the top seven strategies to drop benefit costs without decreasing coverage. Let me know ideas I've missed as well...