The Source: Weekly Roundup – April 22nd, 2019

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Welcome to The Source, your one-stop-shop for the latest and greatest HR and benefits news. Our weekly publication highlights this week’s top stories in human resources, benefits administration, insurance, legislation and more to make sure you can stay on top of industry trends and changes. Start off your week on a high note with The Source!

In this week's edition, we explore the efforts of large employers to disrupt the health care system, the benefits industry's biggest misconceptions, a new study about workplace wellness programs and more! Click To Tweet

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Employee Development Plans: 4 Winning Steps to Engaged Employees

An “employee development plan” is a process for helping individuals improve skills for their current job and acquire knowledge and skills for new roles and responsibilities in an organization. 86% of millennials say that career development and training would prevent them from leaving their employers. So how do you create one of these plans for your organization? Check out a step-by-step how-to summary in BambooHR’s blog.

How 60 of the Nation’s Biggest Employers are Uniting to Fight the Benefits Status Quo

The Employer Health Innovation Roundtable is a grassroots group of the country’s biggest employers that represent nearly 8 million employees to connect with health-tech startups and look for solutions to a host of health-related issues plaguing the workplace.

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The group represents the efforts of employers including Google, Boeing, Walmart and Facebook joining together to try and take more control of a health system that is wasteful, costly and confusing. Read more about their disruptive efforts on Employee Benefit Adviser.

Mythbusters: The Benefits Industry Tackles Its Biggest Misconceptions

The benefits industry is nothing if not complicated, and many commonly-held beliefs turn out to be completely untrue. BenefitsPro asked its readers to share the biggest myths they see in the industry. One big one that stuck out to us – many use the terms health care and health insurance interchangeably, when in reality, the amount you pay for health insurance does not necessarily translate to the quality or frequency of care you can get. Read more in BenefitsPro.

Study Finds Workplace Wellness Programs Ineffective

A new study published this week found that workplace wellness programs don’t cut costs for employers, reduce absenteeism or improve workers’ health.

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Researchers assigned 20 BJ’s Wholesale Club outlets to offer a wellness program to all employees and then compared results with 140 stores that did not over a period of 18 months. Participants got small-dollar gift cards for taking wellness courses on topics such as nutrition, exercise, disease management and stress control. Get the full rundown of the results in EBN.

The Mistake Companies Make Using Data to Plan Diversity Efforts

U.S. firms need to work on diversity and inclusion, and many are starting with people analytics to pinpoint where they need to ramp up their efforts. One issue with this is rooted in the fact that the smallest groups may represent as little as 1% of the workforce and consist of fewer than 50 employees. With such limited data, many companies revert back to broad categories like “all women” as they structure diversity initiatives. Read more about why this is a big mistake in stepping up diversity efforts in Harvard Business Review.

Can Employers Require Measles Vaccines?

The short answer is generally no, but there are exceptions. Employees are allowed to object to vaccinations for religious reasons or because they have an ADA disability, but not at the risk of the health and safety of others.

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The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) generally prohibits employer medical examinations, except in the cases of health care providers, schools and nursing homes because their employees work with people who have more vulnerable immune systems. Get the full analysis from SHRM.

This Week in PlanSource | Free Webinar: The Secret to Having the Best Enrollment Ever

2019 is flying by, and open enrollment will be here before you know it. Now’s the time to set your team up for success – to finalize your benefits strategy, lay out your employee communications plan, and ensure you have everything you need for the best OE ever.

Brian Philips of PlanSource and Taylor Clausen of Jellyvision are teaming up to help you plan and execute a flawless open enrollment. Join us Tuesday, April 23 at 2 pm ET for a free HRCI- and SHRM-approved webinar about employment law changes and how they will affect your business.

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Thought Of The Week

A new study of workplace wellness programs did not bring down health care costs or result in differences in key health measures, like blood sugar or glucose levels. JAMA, 2019

Has your workplace wellness program lowered health care costs or improved employee health? 

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