90 Percent of Brokers Cite High Employer Demand for Benefits Communication Services
DirectPath, the industry leader in personalized benefits education, health care transparency and tax-advantaged reimbursement plan administration, today released a new report, What Brokers are Doing to Meet Evolving Employer Needs. The report, based on a survey of more than 100 health insurance brokers, reveals that employers continue to lean on brokers to control rising health care costs, with two thirds of surveyed brokers reporting that their employer clients rely on them to contain health insurance spend.
To drive cost savings opportunities for employers, brokers are increasingly investing in services to educate their clients’ employees to become more informed health care consumers. Ninety percent of surveyed brokers report moderate to high demand for benefits communications services, which explain critical benefits information to employees; 85 percent report moderate to high demand for employee engagement services, which help increase employee participation in preferred health plans via one-on-one consults, enrollment support and education; and 74 percent report moderate to high demand for transparency services, which compare cost and quality among providers, explain savings opportunities and educate employees about their care options. In response to employer needs, 97 percent of broker respondents offer benefits communications services and three quarters offer engagement and transparency services.
“The role of the health insurance broker has changed significantly in the past few years,” said Michael Byers, CEO, DirectPath. “Brokers today have to be so much more than benefits salespeople. They are expected to be strategic consultants to their employer clients who require guidance optimizing the ROI of their health care investments. Whereas in the past, broker services like employee engagement and transparency were perceived as cutting-edge, they are now considered tablestakes solutions for brokers who want to compete.”
In addition to providing employers with benefits communication, employee engagement and transparency services, 62 percent of surveyed brokers say their clients highly rely on them for compliance services, with 91 percent reporting they see a lot of value from these services.
As we enter 2019, brokers plan to continue adding new and innovative services to meet market demand. Seventy-seven percent cite rising health care costs as a key driver of innovation, while 60 percent report price transparency as a key reason for enhancing their business strategies in the year ahead.
“With health care policy in flux – and with demand for price transparency drawing significant attention – employers will undoubtedly look to brokers to help them navigate the shifting health care landscape and empower employees to best choose and use their benefits,” continued Byers. “Whether brokers provide these services directly or provide referrals to outside vendors, they have a tremendous opportunity to deliver value to employers and their employees by helping them curb health care costs.”
For more information, download What Brokers are Doing to Meet Evolving Employer Needs.