Health Care Reform Mandate

large_2941655917Last week I talked about the role of benefits administrators migrating into a strategic partnership to make sure businesses were making smart fiscal decisions when it comes to benefits.  With health care reform coming up in 2014 administrators acting more like partners is going to be more important than ever.  On the administrative side of things, HR departments are going to be a sounding board for employee questions and concerns.  On the strategic side, there are a multitude of things HR benefits professionals are going to have to be intently knowledgeable about so companies can weigh all sides of the exchange and make a well-informed and educated decision.

To play or not to play, that is the question.  Since companies with 50 or more employees are going to be mandated to offer health insurance to employees working an average of 30 or more hours per week, the big question has been to pay for health insurance or pay the penalty enforced on employers who choose not to offer insurance.  While the penalty, on the surface, looks much lower than the cost of offering health insurance, there are several factors to consider that directly impact dollar amounts:

Public backlash – If you rely on consumers and not only your employees to bring in money, customers from the general public may take their business elsewhere if they hear you don’t offer insurance to employees.

Attraction & Retention – Top talent may take their skills to a competitor who chooses to offer insurance rather than pay the penalties.

Part-time employees – Employees who are forced into part-time work for their company to avoid health insurance mandates may not continue to bring their A-game.  Lower employee morale may result in lower productivity, directly affecting your bottom line.

Compensation – Remember to factor in the additional compensation you may have to pay to make up for lost health care. 

Whatever moves your company makes with regards to health care reform, there are many factors to consider that will lead to the correct fiscal decision.  You can follow Serenity Staffing on Facebook and LinkedIn to stay up-to-date on HR news.