Smart group health brokers now offer comprehensive benefits, employee communications and enrollment support.
New trends in the public sector market have created big opportunities for voluntary benefits providers. Historically, the public sector has used rich benefits packages to attract high-quality employees away from the better-paying private sector. But that strategy is in trouble. The public sector has been hit hard by rising health care costs. It’s also squeezed by budget cuts and reduced human resources staff. Public sector entities are looking for solutions, and with the right voluntary benefits partner, you can provide them.
Changing times demand a change in tactics
Many public sector employers have been forced to turn to higher deductibles to contain costs, which may have eroded their employee benefits’ edge over the private sector. Help your public sector accounts regain this advantage with voluntary products that bridge the gaps left by reductions in core benefits.
If you can offer a benefit that doesn’t cost the employer anything but provides comfort for employees when things happen in their lives, then you can make a difference in this market.
Provide benefits communication to make yourself indispensable
Human resources departments are understaffed in many public sector workplaces and may welcome your help. That’s why it’s essential for you and your voluntary benefits partner to provide comprehensive benefits communications.
First, work with the HR staff to create an attractive, payroll-deducted benefits package that supplements their current benefits program and is tailored to their specific workforce. Choose your voluntary product offerings strategically because you may confuse and overwhelm employees if you offer too many choices in the initial enrollment.
Second, make sure employees understand their benefits and the value of what their employer provides, particularly if there are major changes in their core benefits program. The right voluntary benefits partner will be able to deliver printed materials and presentations that can be tailored to any audience and setting. Your partner needs to be flexible and experienced enough to provide effective communications in any situation, including one-on-one, individual sessions, group meetings and benefits fairs.
There’s another welcome service you can provide to HR. Your voluntary benefits partner should be able to update employee records during the enrollment process and upload this corrected information to the employer’s payroll system.
Voluntary short-term disability insurance—a top seller in this market
One of the most popular voluntary products for the public sector market is voluntary short-term disability insurance. While many public sector employees have some sort of long-term disability plan, if they become disabled, they may need short-term disability coverage until their long-term coverage kicks in.
Other voluntary products that fill critical needs in this market are cancer insurance and hospital confinement indemnity plans.
The public sector market is searching for solutions. When you and your voluntary benefits provider can offer needed voluntary products, proven enrollment options and effective communications strategies, you’ll position yourself for a mutually profitable, long-term relationship with your public sector accounts.