October 1 is a critical date for HR. That’s when employers are required to provide workers with an official notice about the availability of insurance exchanges under the healthcare reform law.
Of course, chances are workers will have questions about these notices.
And depending on your company’s healthcare options and strategy, there are a number of different ways to talk to workers about these exchanges.
3 key employer groups
Here are three different employer groups and what each should focus on with their exchange communications, courtesy of Benz Communications:
1. Employers that offer solid healthcare benefits. For the majority of firms that offer health insurance, their benefits will be the best option out there for workers.
But many employees will still want to see what’s out there in the exchanges, and firms will want to make this comparison as easy as possible. Reason: It’s a prime opportunity to show folks just how much value they’re getting from your company’s benefits.
And if workers don’t get the right info from you and go to the exchanges thinking they’ll get a better deal, they could end up blaming your company.
2. Companies with unique workforces. Firms that rely on part-time, seasonal or temp workers that don’t qualify for healthcare benefits have a lot of work to do. These are the types of workers the exchanges were created to benefit.
You’ll want to provide these workers with specific and detailed info on where they can go to get coverage, how it works – and walk them through the process whenever possible.
3. Firms that penalize spouses. If you impose a spousal surcharge or offer bare-bones family coverage, you may want to talk up the exchanges as a viable healthcare option for workers.
And be sure to offer assistance with the application process.