The healthcare landscape is constantly in flux, making it hard for businesses to feel confident managing their insurance plans. However, political turmoil shouldn’t mean paralysis for your business. In fact, learning about different health insurance packages is one of the best tools to stay competitive in the market for top talent.
Our latest Benefits Benchmark Report shows encouraging signs for small and midsize businesses (SMB), offering clarity to leaders who are deciding whether to offer or amend health benefits coverage for their employees and what their best options are.We’ve gathered data from around 4,000 Zenefits customers to explore different benefits packages for companies under 200 employees. This report is designed to help you make more informed decisions about benefits by better understanding what similar companies are doing, and what’s changed within the past year. This will help you determine where your company stands in comparison to the market.
Note: this research is based on a sample of Zenefits customers, and not all SMBs in these regions will experience these same cost trends. However, we can offer tremendous insight into key cost details. Hopefully, this will enable you to design a more competitive health benefits package. And with that, let’s dive in.
Following the same pattern we saw in last year’s report, the monthly premiums are relatively standard across the country except for the Northeast, which has noticeably higher premiums than the national average.
Perhaps the most visible way to support employees’ health is by contributing to their monthly health care premiums. Overall, the national average of employer contribution to individual healthcare plans has risen by 4% since our last report. Here are some of the other developments:
These are the highlights of the contribution data:
- The average employer covers about 76% of individual monthly premiums while the remaining 24% falls on the employee.
- The western states still maintain the highest individual employer contributions, where small businesses helped with 80% of costs– 4% above the average.
- The national average for family employer contribution has not changed since our last report and remains at 38% with employers covering the remaining 62%.
- For family employer contributions, the Northeast has the highest contribution with 44% toward family premiums. This makes sense given that monthly premiums are highest in this region.
In today’s small group health insurance market, there aren’t many choices for employees, although the amount of plans offered tends to correspond with company size and rises with higher head counts. The average number of plans offered this year fluctuates slightly based on the size of each workforce. For example, it’s just 1.64 at firms with fewer than 25 employees compared with 2.37 at companies with 26 to 50 employees and 2.70 at companies with 51 to 100 employees.
When looking at geographic data, only in the West does the number of plans (2.13) exceed the national average (1.94) in 2017. While the Northeast, South, and Central areas of the US offer fewer options than the national average, that average has still increased by 2%.
While these trends are always changing, we will release new benchmarking data every year to keep you up to speed with other organizations in your area. Want to learn more about health insurance? Download our eBook below for more information on the popularity of HMOs vs. PPOs, in-network deductibles, copay vs. coinsurance, and much more: