Ask a small business owner what their goals are with respect to their benefits program and the answer is usually something to the effect of: “the ability to provide competitive coverage for my employees at an affordable price”.
It’s no secret that having a competitive group benefits offering is an essential tool to attract and retain key talent, but for a small business owner, the cost of that plan is critical to their ability to offer it. Over the years I have witnessed many small businesses cancel their group benefits because they couldn’t afford the renewal. It’s not that they didn’t see the value in offering coverage to their employees; it’s that their business wouldn’t survive if they did.
This isn’t to say that the Sirius Benefits small group product is always going to be the cheapest option – it’s not; but what it will provide is peace of mind. There’s never going to be a scenario where the plan sponsor has to cancel their group benefits plan as a direct result of a renewal adjustment they weren’t prepared for.
The majority of small business owners are also the HR department, the sales and marketing team, the finance and accounting team, compliance, legal, and customer support team – so who’s supporting the business owner? This is the fundamental question Sirius Benefits set out to answer when developing products for their small group solution.
HR @ Your Service
Dealing with human resource related issues can take time, create stress in the workplace, and be costly to employers. This is especially true for small or growing businesses.
To assist plan sponsors, Sirius Benefits embedded a product called HR @ Your Service, which provides direct access to a Human Resources Specialist via phone or email to answer any HR related questions. For example:
- Guidance with employee discipline and termination
- Legislative understanding and best practice guidance
- Labour relations advice
- Respectful workplace guidance and advice
- Advice with form and document development
- Guidance in establishing policies and procedures
In addition to this, there is 24/7 emergency support available as well as a monthly HResources newsletter.
Embedded within the Long-term Disability benefit, this program provides professional services to help improve workplace health and wellness. The goal of the Posaction Plus assistance program is to provide managers with professional resources to help them prevent and resolve problems affecting employee well-being and attendance. It includes training modules for managing teams, telephone coaching, post-traumatic counselling and psychosocial assistance for troubled employees.
This mental health micro-site was designed to add support to workplace and individual mental health, and while it’s geared more towards the plan member, People Connect offers employers and leaders resources, information, and training to help them create a psychologically safe workplace.
At the end of the day, everyone wants to feel like they’re getting value for their dollar. When I put a quarter into the candy machine at the arena, I’m expecting to get more than one Skittle. Business owners pride themselves on delivering said value to their clients through the products and services they offer, and expect the same in return from their suppliers. So if you’re a small business owner, would you rather have one Skittle or the whole bag?
If you missed part one or two of this series, I won’t hold that against you. I’m sure lots of people watched ‘Return of the Jedi’ before ‘A New Hope’ and ‘The Empire Strikes Back’. Coming soon! The finale of my tetralogy – Episode Four: The Rise of Plan Members.