Do you have a renewal strategy, or do you wait and see what your renewal is before you react? Here’s a several HARD questions you might want to ask yourself:
- If you have a strategy, what does that look like?
- Do you proactively look at alternatives?
- Does your broker just shop insurance companies and PPO networks?
- Do they tell you that one insurance company has better PPO discounts than the next?
- Are they shopping the same insurance companies each and every year, only to justify the renewal from the incumbent?
- Do they initially present a big increase only to come back later and say they’ve worked hard at getting it down, and now it’s only an 11% increase?
- Is it the same “hamster wheel” year after year?
Your strategy needs to be a very innovative and a proactive one. Your strategy can consist of a wide variety of approaches, depending upon your company’s needs, objectives, culture, employee considerations, and bottom line … just to name a few.
Over my many years of experience, I’ve learned that if you want real long term results, you need to think AND ACT outside the box – the status quo is no longer acceptable and cannot be sustained. Would you rather give your premium dollars to the insurance company, or would you rather give those same premium dollars back to your employees in the form of a wage increase or bonus?
There are many, many alternatives that can be explored and investigated. Not all options fit all situations, but can be adaptable and customized for almost every employer and their employees – but your advisor needs to be knowledgeable, open, and honest to alternatives – not stuck in the same ‘ol hamster wheel.
In my seminars I ask the audience, “When was the last time your broker or consultant brought you an idea or alternative that could save you 20% – 50% in your healthcare costs?” They look at me like I’m from another planet! Then, some will say “Never!”
Why is that? Why hasn’t someone brought you ideas to DRAMATICALLY lower your costs? Is it because they don’t know of any alternative solutions to bring you, or is it because they don’t want to? If they don’t want to, why is that? Could it be because of their commission/fee revenue? Hmmm…
Have you ever asked them what innovative alternatives they have (other than shopping the various insurance companies and their purported PPO discounts)? Or, something other than changing your employee contributions or raising their deductibles, copays, etc.?
I’ve been in this business long enough to know that there are very innovative brokers and consultants that provide valuable experience and knowledge to the table for their clients. There are others who are content doing the same ‘ol thing year after year for their struggling clients, influenced by insurance companies to sell the same ‘ol stuff year after year, because of the increased commission revenue that they can achieve.
If your advisor, consultant, or broker cannot answer these questions and more – you need someone else. Check out my book on Amazon for the real questions you need to ask any advisor who you may be working with or considering. Of course, I am always available to help you out as well!
If you want to know what you can do to lower your costs, you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 970.349.7707.