What to Expect when Setting Up a New Benefits Plan

Every company reaches a point in its growth when the owner will consider setting up an employee benefits plan for their staff. Sometimes that point comes at employee number three and sometimes it happens at employee number 15. Regardless, trying to understand the ins-and-outs of what is required and what an organizations should expect from a new benefits plan can be overwhelming. That’s where a qualified employee benefits consultant such as BenefitDeck can assist.

In a previous article titled 5 Most Commonly Asked Questions about Starting a New Benefit Plans, I covered the very preliminary questions clients might have when starting their search. In this article, I intend to elaborate on what you can expect when you finally decide to say ‘Sign us up!’

1. Setting Up the Plan – From the moment you decide to setup an employee benefits plan, it can take anywhere from 2-6 weeks to receive the plan documents and for the insurer’s system to be ready to take claims. The time it takes to set things up is mostly dependent on the insurance provider that is selected. BenefitDeck can usually deliver a 2-week turn-around time because we maintain solid supplier relationships which put our clients in the fast lane during plan setups and service resolutions.

2. Communicating to Employees – In the process of setting up the plan, you’ll need to tell your employees. We usually recommend that our clients send out a general memo announcing the new employee benefits plan and asking each employee to complete and submit an enrollment form for the insurance provider. When the plan has been setup and documentations and plan identification cards are ready, BenefitDeck will work with your team to explain the benefits plan to your employees, including coverage, claims processes and other details. Read more about how to effectively communicate your benefits plan.

3. Automating Payroll Deductions – Upon setting up the plan, each client decides what percentage of the insurance premium they would like to contribute, which normally falls in the range of 50-100%. As your dedicated benefits consultant, our team will provide a spreadsheet with payroll deduction calculations so it’s easy to input those amounts in your payroll software. Since each employee will differ, hosting short one-on-one meetings to explain deductions or at the very least, mentioning to look out for benefits-related deductions will help avoid any unwanted surprises.

4. Benefits Consultant Services – When working with BenefitDeck, you can expect to receive ongoing service from our team. If ever there are any questions, changes to the plans, queries about a claim payout, we act as your point of contact. We work for our clients, on behalf of our clients, so that you are able to get the most from your benefits plan investments 5. Preparing for Annual Renewals – The first renewal likely happens between 15-18 months depending on the insurance provider, and then subsequent renewals take place annually. As a rule of thumb, clients should expect a 10% inflationary increase. Within the first year, the insurance provider will generally adjust rates according to the amount of usage. The advantage of working with BenefitDeck is that we actively monitor your overall claims, and advise you on a quarterly basis if your company has a higher-than-expected claims ratio. This helps you prepare for higher renewal increases or gives you the option to adjust the plan on the spot.

Simplify the Process with BenefitDeck

If you are thinking about setting up a new employee benefits plan within your company, working with a trusted and experienced benefits consultant will help you streamline the process. It doesn’t stop there. As your company continues to grow, the BenefitDeck team will be there to answer any questions, handle dealings with insurance providers and ensure that you are receiving the employee benefits plan that uniquely suits your company and budget. Contact us today.

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