Junk policies: they have so many holes in their coverage you could use them as a colander. Exceptions and conditions galore, they can often be worse than having no insurance at all; providing nothing but the illusion of safety — an illusion that is quickly shattered when it actually comes to claim time.
Here’s how you can spot a junky wellness insurance package, and how to create one that is actually valuable to your employees:
Better and cheaper
If you want to create a genuinely valuable insurance package for your employees, there are only two things you need to do: you need to make it cheaper than individual insurance, and you need to make it better than individual insurance.
Let’s start with making it cheaper. Insurance is expensive — more expensive than it has ever been, in fact. From 2007 to 2016, health insurance costs alone have increased by 72 per cent, and households spend about $62.40 every week on it on average. That’s a lot of expenditure, and it’s an easy win for you to reduce or eliminate those costs. By subsidising those personal insurance needs with an appropriate corporate policy, you will earn a lot of good will from your workers — and they’ll be far less likely to see it as just paying lip service to wellness.
You need to make it cheaper than individual insurance, and you need to make it better than individual insurance.
Offering a “better” policy is a little more difficult. Even insurance providers have been finding it tougher to live up to their clients’ standards: less than half of people with health insurance were very satisfied with their provider, and that only gets worse for life insurance.
That grumbling gives you an opportunity. People aren’t happy with their policies or their providers, so you give them an alternative: a corporate plan that leverages your group negotiation ability to seal the deal on better coverage. Who could say no to that?
Cheaper, better insurance: seemingly simple, but you’ll need to thoroughly research your potential providers to ensure you are getting the best of both worlds. That’s the only way you’re going to impress your employees.
The pre-existing conditions waiver
One of the biggest barriers to your wellness plan is the pre-existing conditions issue. If you’ve suffered from a chronic problem in the past, or it can be proven that you had it before taking on the policy, then ”too bad, so sad”: your insurer often won’t cover you for it.
Unless you have a corporate insurance plan with a provider that allows for a pre-existing condition waiver.
With the additional bargaining power of a corporate plan, you can provide enough value for a provider to take on the risk of ignoring previous conditions.
By negotiating for this, you are providing something that your workers can’t get elsewhere, and what’s more, you’re making it as easy as possible for people to switch over from a personal plan to your corporate scheme.
Increase bargaining power
Making the switch to a corporate plan is a difficult choice for your employees. But you can make it easier by making the insurance an intrinsic part of their employment contract — everybody gets a basic level of cover, regardless of what position they have and what their current, individual insurance policies are.
This ensures that your workers are avoiding the common pitfalls of insurance (as you’ve had expert advice on choosing the right cover), as well as providing better service for your workers.
You can make it easier by making the insurance an intrinsic part of their employment contract.
What’s more, you also improve your negotiation power with every additional person in your corporate scheme. This relates back to the pre-existing conditions waiver: you need at least 15 people in your scheme to qualify for it for health insurance, and more than a hundred for life, trauma and so on. The more people you have, the better results for everyone.
As your company grows and your staffing grows with it, an in-built insurance scheme keeps everybody healthy, avoids common insurance mistakes, and opens doors for you to improve the coverage of your employees even further.
To avoid junk policies that nobody really wants in your wellness insurance package, you need to remember three things:
- Make it better than the alternatives.
- Make sure you have a pre-existing conditions waiver.
- Make sure everybody has a basic level of cover.
For more information on your wellness program, download our free ebook below.