The Business Group Blog was created to share and discuss information about challenges and solutions to the health care benefits issues that large employers face today and tomorrow — such as controlling health care costs, reforming the health care delivery system, and engaging employees in their health and benefits — and will provide insight into national health policy issues. We hope you find this information useful and will consider subscribing to the blog and sharing any thoughts or ideas with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In our modern world, flexibility is the freedom to thrive in and out of the office, and it’s what women want. Today’s top talent is attracted to forward-thinking, flexible, and family-friendly workplaces.
After decades of growth, women’s participation in the U.S. workforce has been declining. In 1990, the United States had the sixth highest female workforce participation rate of 24 OECD economies. By 2014, it dropped to 22nd.1 Research indicates the lack of family-friendly policies accounted for approximately 28% of the relative decline.2
Accountable care organizations (ACOs) are being considered as one the key strategies in the next frontier of efforts to improve health care delivery and control health benefit costs. Roughly one in four large employers plan to pursue an ACO strategy in 2017 and that number is expected to grow in the coming years. However, employers have many questions about how ACOs deliver value better than the network models they offer today. To help employers better understand and evaluate ACOs in their markets, two groundbreaking tools have been released by the National Business Group on Health.
Stephen Schwarzman, Chairman and CEO of global private equity firm Blackstone and chair of the President’s Strategic and Policy Forum, published a letter to the editor in the Wall Street Journal on June 19. His letter was in response to an earlier WSJ editorial on paid family leave, “The Ivanka Entitlement,” which critiqued the President’s 2018 budget proposal requiring states to provide six weeks of paid family leave for new mothers and fathers, including adoptive parents.
Today’s consumers have come to expect and demand increased personalization in their shopping experience, leading to greater sales, repeat visits and increased customer loyalty. Employers can take the same approach to using data and technology to personalize health and well-being communications in an effort improve the employee experience and increase engagement.
Employers can leverage the following process to create personalized messages:
A number of cities and states have enacted laws requiring employers to offer paid sick leave to employees. Each state and local government law varies, increasing administrative burden and causing compliance headaches for large multi-state employers, many of which already provide generous paid leave programs for employees. More states and cities are considering legislation in 2017 to mandate paid sick leave.
Large employers are increasingly utilizing networks of volunteer employees as an extension of their wellness staff, commonly called “wellness champions”. Their role is to help drive employee participation and engagement in wellness activities at the local level. 77% of large employers have been found to have some type of wellness champion network. While the size of champion networks varies greatly, 56% of employers have at least 50 wellness champions in their network.
All employers trying to build robust health and well-being programs struggle with finding and nurturing vendor relationships that fit within their company’s culture and achieve their programs’ goals. Finding the right partner for your organization can be challenging, but it also can be rewarding and can play a vital role in the outcome of your programs. A recent NBGH survey of large employers from seven different industries yields the following tips for developing and maintaining successful vendor relationships.