2019 Benefits Benchmark: Medical Plans Diversify As Costs Continue To Rise

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We’re excited to share the first annual PlanSource Benefits Benchmark Report. In this report, we showcase this year’s top trends for employee benefits enrollment, benefit types offered, contribution amounts and more.

This groundbreaking annual report is based on real user data from the PlanSource benefits administration platform. The enrollment data represents trends established from the more than 92 million benefit elections that have been made in our system.

If you’re wondering what the report contains and what to make of the data—we’ve got you covered with our top takeaways for 2019.

In this quick recap, we’ll review how much the cost of providing health care has increased in the past year and explore how many plans and benefit options the average employer offers. Let’s take a look.

Medical Plans and Benefit Offerings

average number of medical plans offered by employers
average number of total benefits offered by employers

Our data indicates that the average number of medical plans and overall benefits offered has remained flat for small employer groups over the past several years. However, mid-sized to large employers are diversifying their health and benefits portfolios by offering more plan options. Keep in mind that not every employee is eligible for all benefits offered. For example, hourly employees may not be eligible for long-term disability, union workers may automatically have vision coverage, etc.

Cost of Providing Health Care

For companies using PlanSource as their benefits technology platform, premiums rose 8%-9% this year, which is slightly higher than the latest Kaiser Family Foundation report that indicates a 3%-5% increase in premiums.

For comparison, SHRM predicted an annual increase of 4.3% while Willis Towers Watson predicted an increase of 5.5%.

What can HR teams do to control costs? Only 50% of our customers offer a high deductible health plan, which is a popular option to lower premium costs for employers and employees. Other cost-saving initiatives include offering a telemedicine program, performing a dependent audit, implementing spousal surcharges and investing in decision support tools to help employees make better benefits decisions.

Who’s Paying?

benefits benchmark cost of providing health care premium breakdown

Employees are covering more of the cost for family plans and for non-HDHP plans. Employers paid the most for HDHP single plans, while employees paid the least for single HDHPs. Does your premium cost-sharing model match these numbers?

Employers are picking up a majority of the tab for health insurance coverage across the board. This is a major expense that is largely taken for granted. Are your employees aware of the full cost of coverage? Showcasing this through a print or digital total compensation statement is an easy way to reinforce the investment you are making in employees and to visualize the full scope of benefits.

Be sure to download your free copy of the 2019 Benefits Benchmark Report for an in-depth review of benefits trends and insights!

Get The Report

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