Determine the needs of your small business
Is cost your number one concern? What kind of coverage is most valuable to you and your employees? Consider the following questions and discuss some of them with your employees to help you gauge your overall needs.
Answer the following questions to define your needs:
Who will be covered under this plan?
- You and your family?
- Your employees’ spouses and/or dependents?
- The plan you choose will need to be affordable for all who participate. It should meet the medical and financial needs of those it will cover.
- Are your employees interested in joining your small group plan? Or are they already covered through a spouse or individual plan?
How much cost-sharing can you afford as an employer?
Group health insurance is employer-sponsored coverage, but monthly premiums are typically paid for by both the employer and employees. In many states, employers are generally required to cover at least 50 percent of the monthly premium for their employees. Keep this in mind when considering quotes for health plans later in the shopping process.
Would employees rather pay more up front and less when sick, or vice versa?
Oftentimes, plans with less expensive monthly premiums come with higher annual deductibles and plans with lower deductibles come with higher monthly premiums. It’s important to find a balance of monthly premium and deductible that works for as many people in your group as possible.
What kinds of benefits are most important to you and your employees?
While federal privacy laws prevent you from asking your employees for information about their personal medical history, you may still ask them about which kinds of benefits they consider most valuable. Are they more interested in catastrophic coverage in case of serious illness or hospitalization, or in low deductibles or copayments? Understanding the benefits most valued by your employees can help you find a plan more likely to meet everyone’s needs.