Stats and Tips on Getting More Value from Your Benefits Plan

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes and 29 seconds

Employee benefits plans can represent a significant investment for most organizations. That’s why employers need to know whether their people are getting the most value from their health and wellness plans. So how does a business owner or human resource manager determine that? According to the 2020 Sanofi Canada Healthcare Survey, strategy is the engine and data analysis is the fuel. 

How strategy and plan engagement are linked

With a key theme of ‘Future Forward’, the survey included opinions from over 500 businesses across Canada with about 250 employees each. Of the respondents, 61% of plan sponsors said they had set objectives for their benefits plan this year. Interestingly, this alone is a key indicator that affects how an employer views, and takes action, on their plan. 

For instance, the survey reported that 89% of those that have specific objectives consider their employee benefits plans to be excellent or good, versus 65% who think the same but have no clear objectives set for their health plans. 

Again, 89% of those with concrete plan objectives are likely to invest more funding or resources in wellness over the next 3 years. Only 53% of those without objectives said the same. 

This demonstrates that when an employer focuses on the employee benefits strategy, they are more engaged in deriving greater value from their health and wellness plans. This helps to maximize their investment while supporting the health, wellbeing, and productivity of their people.

How frequent plan analysis drives stronger strategy

One more interesting takeaway from the survey was that only 22% of plan sponsors receive claims analysis regularly. 23% of respondents said they get plan performance reports occasionally, while another 20% said they get it upon request. 5% of plan sponsors actually pull data from their carriers directly. More so, about 31% of respondents said they never get claims analysis at all. And of those, 58% would like to. 

The survey also suggests that those receiving claims analysis are more likely to have specific plan objectives and more interested in sharing targeted health information with employees. Of those with objectives, 70% receive plan performance updates, vs 40% that do not. Of those who want to proactively send out wellness information to plan members, 87% receive claims updates versus 60% who do not. 

In other words, there is a higher level of strategy and willingness to increase plan value amongst employers who regularly review claims analysis. And that’s not entirely shocking. With set objectives and more information about plan performance, employers can see what might be working and what might not be. From there, they can make better, more informed decisions about their employee benefits plan and deliver more value to their employees. 

5 quick tips on getting value from your employee benefits plans

  1. Identify your key plan objectives – This helps set a benchmark for what you’re looking to achieve. Strategic goals also help you determine whether your plan is delivering results. 
  2. Review your plan’s performance oftenA quarterly review is best. This allows for enough time to gather a good sample size of data. It also ensures you’re not allowing too much time to pass to miss any potential gaps or red flags that need addressing in your benefits plan.
  3. Collect feedback from your employeesSurveys are an easy way to collect employee feedback. This supplements the information you already have on plan performance and empowers employees to decide exactly what they want from the benefits plan. 
  4. Be open and willing to adapt your plan – Always remember that you can modify your plan throughout the year. If you spot any pain points in your quarterly review, it’s best to address them right away and update your plan for more successful outcomes
  5. Rely on a trusted advisor for guidance – In the Sanofi survey, a plan sponsor’s lack of time was a major barrier for setting objectives and sharing data. Our team at BenefitDeck can help you set objectives and stay informed about plan performance. If things change, we’ll make recommendations so that you and your team continue getting value from your benefits plan. 

Interested in downloading the full 2020 Sanofi Canada Healthcare Survey? Get the report here

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