Employers have seen health benefit costs grow 75% over the past five years. Total health benefits costs are about $9,000 per year, per employee. Over 60% of employers cite containing these costs as their highest HR priority for several years. To cut costs employers are taking steps to reduce or even eliminate benefits. Companies are also increasing the amount that employees and retirees have to pay for health insurance, reducing employer contributions to pension plans, and implementing prescription drug management programs. These actions have reduced employee satisfaction with their benefits. Many employees voice concerns that their annual pay increases only cover the extra benefits charges they must pay.
Questions for Discussion:
To maintain benefit costs for current employees, do you think companies should eliminate benefits for retirees? Why or why not?
To cut benefit costs, employers could charge employees more for health benefits or reduce the contributions to pensions. Which do you think is best and why?
Should employee health benefits be paid by the employer? Discuss other options