When it comes to enrollment, Brandon Scarborough, co-founder of Power Group worksite division and PowerEnroll at Power Group Companies in Overland Park, Kan., has his hands full.
Much of Scarborough’s time is spent setting up the enrollment, working with the carriers and implementing the proper technology. Despite Scarborough’s many responsibilities, ensuring the enrollment conditions are just right for the employees is the most difficult aspect of his job but critical to engagement, he says.
“Getting people to call in and enroll in their benefits is an extreme challenge,” Scarborough says. “You need buy-in from the employers, and you have to have strong communication so that the employees understand what is being offered. It’s your job as a broker to make sure those conditions are right.”
Voluntary benefits are also a large component of Scarborough’s business, and he sees the various ancillary products as an area that is undergoing growth in the industry. With the health care exchange system scheduled to take effect in 2014, Scarborough believes more employers will look at voluntary benefits as another option.
“With the health care exchanges and everything that’s going on with health care reform, voluntary benefits are going to be a much bigger part of an employer’s overall benefit package,” Scarborough says. “They are going to be much more important than they were. Voluntary benefits are still important now, but I think there’s going to be a much bigger focus on them going forward, just because of what the exchanges are going to bring up. Right now is the time to be in the voluntary industry.”
In Scarborough’s experience, group worksite voluntary products, including accident policies and critical illness insurance, are especially becoming popular. When worksite voluntary products were first introduced, they were designed as individual policies, but more carriers are beginning to offer them as a group plan.
“Accident policies and critical illness are the big buzz in the industry right now because they’re the newest products and people are moving toward group critical illness, which makes it to where you don’t have to get licensed in every state to be able to enroll it,” Scarborough says. “So those have been pretty popular.”
For Scarborough, the appeal of the benefits industry centers on the opportunity to help a wide range of clients. Whether a group is small or large, Scarborough can help that client find a plan that fits best for its unique needs.
“I love the flexibility and being able to work in any industry that you want,” Scarborough says. “Everybody is a potential client to me. I like the fact that I can go out and find any size or any industry can go out and be a potential client. It’s just your job to go out and make them your client and make the sale.”
Photo by Austin Walsh
Find out who the other Broker of the Year finalists are as we announce them April 23 - April 27 on BenefitsPro.com.