Person holding smiley face signBusinesses that look out for their employees' best interests havefar more success in keeping and attracting the kind of talent thathelps the company grow. (Photo: Shutterstock)

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When many business owners look at how much they spend on benefits, the costs seem soastronomical that creating significant savings can seem impossible.The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) estimated last year that employers would spendan average of $14,800 per employee in 2019, and given howhealthcare costs have steadily risen over recent years, this numberisn't likely to decrease any time soon.

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A great advisor can help you find savings throughout yourbenefits plan, and even changes that seem small on the surface canlead to thousands of dollars in savings, opportunities forgrowth within your business and even increased employeesatisfaction. Recently, one of my clients experienced this forthemselves when they switched to a self-funding plan and saved bigon just one employee's prescription.

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A $44,000 decision

The high cost of prescription drugs is no secret. We targetedthis as we examined how to help our aforementioned client save ontheir benefits plan, and we were able to source one arthritismedication (Humira) for one of their employees. This drugretails for $60,000, but we were able to reduce the cost to theemployer to just $16,000, saving them $44,000 or nearly 75 percentof the original cost.

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Related: Everyone says we must control exorbitant drugprices. So, why don't we?

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These savings also extended to the employee in question. Theworker was originally going to have to pay a $150 copay, but wewere able to eliminate the copay entirely. For one employee on aretail salary, saving nearly $40 a week on medication can make ahuge difference.

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This single instance saved both the employer and employee alarge amount of money, and now, both of them can apply thosesavings to their own goals.

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Improved employee satisfaction

An extra $150 a month in savings can significantly improve aperson's life, and the employer in this story now has the privilegeof delivering that good news to their worker. Imagine what thatemployee could do with $1,800 a year in savings: pay off bills ordebt, buy more gifts for their kids at Christmas, even save up fora well-deserved vacation over a couple years.

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The positivity that results from this level of savings can alsohave a positive impact on the company by:

  • Reducing turnover rates – This employee is farless likely to search for another job when they know that theircurrent employer can essentially offer them $1,800 more peryear.
  • Boosting employee morale – An employee whofeels like their employer is looking out for them is far morelikely to be positive and productive at work.
  • Attracting better talent – Offering evidencelike this to other potential hires provides them with a huge reasonto work for you instead of your competitors.

Businesses that look out for their employees' best interestshave far more success in keeping and attracting the kind of talentthat helps the company grow.

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The opportunity for investment

The tens of thousands of dollars the employers saved in thiscase can now be implemented as a strategic tool for their business.As a retail company, $44,000 can fund the salaries of one or twonew hires. They can also put the money toward rewarding theiremployees through raises or bonuses. Investing in their employeescan, again, have a positive impact on their recruiting andretention rates, potentially saving them even more money throughreduced hiring and training costs.

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Your advisor can work with the leaders in your business touncover these opportunities for growth and savings. By finding even“small” ways to reduce expenses and stretch your dollars, they canprevent unnecessary benefits spending and help you turn yoursavings into opportunities for your business to evolve.

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Simple changes for a huge impact

Sourcing just one prescription drug for just one employee maynot seem like it could offer a lot to a business, but our client'sexperience proves that the opposite is true. By placing their trustin us, this employer saved tens of thousands of dollars whilecreating a better work experience for their employee. Now, both ofthem can use their savings for improvement and growth wherever theysee fit.

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Jim Blachek is co-founderof The Benefits Group.


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