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The Employee Benefits Blog

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Employee Benefits News Roundup: Looking Back at 2014 and Preparing for 2015

2015 benefits trends

It’s almost that time of year. If you haven’t made your 2015 benefits plan yet, you probably will soon. Before looking ahead, it’s a good idea to look back. Did your benefits cost more this year than last year? Was the increase as much as you anticipated? Will this trend continue into next year? What about your voluntary benefits? What will be the popular offering next year?

How to Build an Effective Open Enrollment Communications Strategy

How to Communicate About Open Enrollment

No matter when you hold open enrollment, getting the word out about it can be a challenge. Putting together a communication plan for open enrollment can help ensure you reach the most people and get them the information they need to make informed decisions about their benefits. Here are some tips for creating an effective open enrollment communication strategy.

Employee Benefits News Roundup: Life Insurance Awareness Month

life insurance awareness month

September is Life Insurance Awareness Month and many companies are using this opportunity to encourage discussions about coverage. Does your organization provide life insurance to its employees? Are you seeing enough participation in this plan? Will your employees need additional coverage beyond their employer-sponsored plan? They probably will. A new report released by LIMRA says that most Americans are underinsured by a substantial margin.

Open Enrollment: Helping Employees Pick the Right Mix of Voluntary Benefits

How to help employees choose the right mix of voluntary benefits

Voluntary benefits are most valuable to employees when they choose the right mix of benefits. During open enrollment, it’s important that employees understand their voluntary benefits options and make the choices that work best for them and their families. Here are some tips on helping employees pick the right mix of voluntary benefits during open enrollment.

Employee Benefits News Roundup: Workplace Wellness Plans

Workplace wellness

Workplace wellness plans, also called corporate wellness plans, can be an integral and successful part of your benefits strategy -- if you do them correctly. They must be truly voluntary and any incentives or disincentives cannot create a financial hardship for anyone not participating. They must also comply with other regulations under PPACA, ADA and HIPAA. Read on for more tips for creating a successful wellness plan.

6 Ways to Prepare for Open Enrollment Season

How to prepare for open enrollment

Whether your open enrollment period is in the fall or spring, it’s never too early to prepare for open enrollment. Questions and a little confusion are inevitable, but there are ways to make sure things go smoothly. How can you make sure you have a great open enrollment season? It’s all in the preparation. Here are some tips.

Employee Benefits News Roundup: "Skinny” Healthcare Plans

skinny healthcare plans

Last Wednesday, the National Business Group on Health released a survey that polled 136 large companies about the healthcare packages they’ll be offering employees in 2015. The survey revealed that big companies plan to save on healthcare expenses by offering “skinny plans” --  less costly plans that don’t meet ACA coverage guidelines -- alongside more expensive (and therefore less likely to be chosen) plans that do meet ACA requirements. Read on to learn more about the study’s findings.

Winston Benefits Takes the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge

Winston ALS Challenge

We’ve all seen friends, colleagues, politicians and celebrities sharing videos of themselves taking the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge. This viral movement has raised (as of yesterday) a staggering $79.7 million for the ALS Association, a national nonprofit organization dedicated to fighting Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

Employee Benefits News Roundup: Stress and Wellness at Work

Wellness and Stress

Stress and its effect on productivity are serious concerns for employees and employers alike in today’s uncertain, fast-moving business world. That, in part, is driving employee wellness as a priority for many companies, and stress-relieving measures are being used both as employee benefits and savvy moves toward increased productivity.

Identity Theft Protection as a Voluntary Benefit

Identity Theft

Identity theft has always been an issue, but the rise of Internet communication has made it easier for people to pose as others online, steal passwords and access accounts. According to a study by the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics, 7 percent of people 16 or older experienced identity theft in 2012. Almost 14 percent suffered a financial loss because of the identity theft -- and of those, about half lost $100 or more. According to the report, financial losses due to personal identity theft totaled $24.7 billion.

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