Why reminding employees about the supplemental portfolio can boost your sales
by Matt Ennis
Mr. Ennis is the Director of Strategy, Product & Marketing for Reliance Standard. Visit www.reliancestandard.com.
“I think so.”
That is a common response when employees are asked whether or not they have supplemental insurance benefits. Typically, October through December is the enrollment period. So, by the time May rolls round, employees often do not remember what they bought…or didn’t, but perhaps should have.
Medical and dental benefits are typically top-of-mind for obvious reasons, but voluntary benefits such as Critical Illness, Accident, Disability and Hospital Indemnity insurance are often an afterthought, even when they are purchased for good reasons.
What Can Brokers And Employers Do To Help?
For starters, educate employees on the importance of voluntary benefits. This is especially valuable in an environment where high deductible plans are common and, more often than not, a bill is coming after a doctor or hospital visit. Employers know their employee demographics and can certainly recommend supplemental insurance based on age, gender, and other characteristics.
Employers should also communicate to employees, quarterly or annually, what insurance they do have, and that they need to submit claims by end of year. And because people change employers more frequently now than in the past, it is important for employers to remind individuals that these benefits can travel with you.
Building A Stronger Relationship Between Employer And Employee
Employers benefit any time employees maximize benefits, in large part because employees feel valued when their benefit plans are comprehensive. That commitment to helping employees balance work and life translates into stronger performance and a higher likelihood employees will stay with their current employer. This is even more important during post COVID “Great Resignation,” as employee satisfaction, engagement and retention are critical.
In addition, when employees realize they have supplemental insurance, it can lessen financial burden, improve mental well-being, and ultimately help the employee return to work sooner, which benefits all. Lastly, employer sponsored voluntary offerings are less expensive than direct-to-consumer products, resulting in cost savings for employees.
How Can Carriers Help?
All of this helps carriers and brokers build stronger relationships with employers, particularly when technology is leveraged to integrate benefits. For example, if an employee were to call a carrier about a claim, they would automatically be considered for other benefit entitlements without having to file with another carrier for any additional coverage held. As the industry moves toward automation and an integrated benefits experience with one intake point, carriers are streamlining the process and ensuring employees receive all of their benefits when they are needed most.
This solution is important because insurance is often purchased and forgotten, which is understandable given the stress of many of these types of situations. Employers who integrate benefits are simplifying things for employees during a difficult time, with everything in one place. And, ultimately, these supplemental benefits help employees preserve income while on leave.
We can all appreciate that.