The frustration of the year after year double digit premium increases has left many business owners seeing their health insurance renewal as a necessary evil. Fed up with the empty promises of insurance agents, rising costs, diminished benefits, and a lack of options business owners now treat employee benefits like a trip to the dentist.
Once a year you will deal with it, it will be painful, ruin your day and most likely leave you in a horrible mood. How is it you brush 2x a day, floss, use the best mouthwash on the market and yet still need work done? Why even bother… bring on the candy!!
This is health insurance today. Raise plan deductibles, shift the cost to the employees, add co-pays, change carriers and 12 months later, ‘here is your 14% increase; thanks for stopping in.’ What’s the point in changing behavior? Why bring in another insurance agent? Give me my renewal, tell me my increase and I’ll be back in 12 months.
It makes sense, it’s not a business owner’s fault. It’s the fault of insurance carriers that do not answer to the people they offer health insurance for but shareholders who want stock prices to rise and generate profits. The carriers are not interested in providing the highest value health benefits at the best price; they are interested in making money.
They have a business to run. Insurance agents are also to blame. Agents have conditioned business owners and executives to view health insurance as a one year spend, to focus on the yearly increase instead of the total expense. Worse yet, they have made their customers think they can do nothing. I’m sure you’ve heard things similar to this in the past:
“You’re too small to be self-insured.”
“You had a bad year with claims, so we knew this was coming.”
“Everyone is seeing ridiculous increases right now.”
“We can look at another carrier but I doubt they will be much better.”
“There isn’t much a company your size can do.”
It’s time to renew for 12 more months and when you make sure you know that exploring options with other brokers isn’t worth your time.
What if there was a different way? What if it’s possible to pay based on your company’s performance only? What if you design plans that meet your needs? What if you do things throughout the year to help control your overall health care spending while improving the health of your employees?
There is. These statements are 100% actionable. The question is are you willing to challenge yourself to examine and seek an alternative way? If any business expense was increasing 12-15% annually would you sit back and accept it or do everything you could to at the minimum explore all viable options to reduce that cost? Why not do the same with your health insurance?
“Insanity is doing the same thing repeatedly and expecting different results,” — Albert Einstein
It’s time to try something different.