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Tips Every Employer Should Follow This Halloween

This Halloween, don’t scare your employees away. Increase their job experience instead! The hiring process can be a real drain on resources. Not only does it take time, but there’s no guarantee your new employee won’t leave after you have gone to great expense training them. They’ve gained some excellent work experience, but have more than likely left your company in a very tight spot while they take their new-found skills to another employer.

The solution, then, is to ensure your employees never have a reason to leave, and every reason to stay. While life’s too complicated to expect every employee to stay with your company for the entire duration of their career, it’s not unreasonable to assume at least a few years of service before they move on.

Maintaining a high level of morale is not always about the size of the pay packet, as there are many other variables which go into producing an enjoyable and rewarding work environment.  It should be emphasized here that happy and content employees directly correlates to positive customer experiences.

We’ve gathered together a few tips you can use to ensure your employees look forward to clocking on every day and enjoy the time they spend as a valued employee of your business.

Get Regular Employee Feedback

Regularly surveying employees using one of the aptly named pulse survey tools, helps a company keep abreast of work-life balance issues and employee performance challenges. A pulse survey tool is a fast and frequent survey system which does away with complicated questions. This method allows the survey to be completed weekly, and provide a quick insight into the emotional health of the company.

In the past, the strategy for many companies was to take care of shareholders first, customers second, and put their employees’ needs on the backburner. It turns out that taking care of employees needs first results in a more positive customer experience. By taking care of employees and ensuring they maintain a high level of job satisfaction, the benefits cascade up the line to cover the needs of everybody associated with the business – customers, employees, and shareholders alike.

Provide Options for Optimal Work-Life Balance

Never forget that your employees have a life outside of work that is important to them. A steady work-life environment can help to keep everyone happy and stable. When life happens, the chances are high that an employee’s work will be affected, even if they have no intention of letting it do so. Loved ones pass, divorces happen, and kids can go through all manner of drama and often need their parents at odd hours.

It’s important to engage with employees at a personal level and cut them some slack when they are going through a difficult time in their personal life. If extended time off is not an option, try reworking their schedule, so they have at least some leeway to work through their challenges. Employers who work with their employees through challenging life events will be rewarded with loyalty and a worker who makes rational decisions about their career and choice of employer.

Match Employee Goals with Corporate Purpose

In the early days of a start-up, when there are fewer employees, it’s more common for employees’ career goals to be in line with the corporate purpose. As more employees enter into the fold, however, matching their career vision with the company’s goals becomes more difficult. It’s essential for a company to have defined goals, and to also communicate those goals from the top down, to create a cohesive business culture which shares similar values, vision, and the expected behaviors of employees. This well-defined structure highlights the company culture and provides direction for employees to help them progress the company towards that vision and be proud that they are an essential part of it.

It’s not easy to keep all employees happy all of the time. By communicating with and connecting with employees at a personal level, helping with their work-life balance, and regularly communicating the company vision, you will be more successful at retaining your skilled workers for a longer duration.

The Great Importance of Life Insurance Plans for Employees

For many people, life insurance is an afterthought, and often employees don’t realize the importance of getting a proper plan. On the other hand, those who do apply for it usually have to face tons of paperwork and the risk of paying exorbitant amounts of money. This issue can be due to the life insurance’s complexity, misinformation from those who sell it or probably because it’s not a topic that people would rather talk about and discuss with their family members. The truth is, life insurance is one of the pillars of personal finance! That’s why employer-sponsored group plans can be an especially attractive benefit for prospective employees.

With the proper guidance from the right insurance company, such as Lewis & Palmer, it is possible to simplify the decision-making process and choose the right insurance plan for employees, employers, and their families.

Here we are some reasons why it is important to offer life insurance plans to employees:

1. It makes Your Employees Feel Safe

Offering life insurance plans to your employees is a way to let them know that you care and if something happens to them, their family can be financially supported and protected. Many employees might feel intimidated to the thought of something happening to them, and for that reason, it’s important to offer a proper training. Teaching employees about the importance of life insurance will help to increase loyalty to the company as they better appreciate this benefit.

2. It keeps Your Employees Happy & Satisfied

Instructing employees on the importance of obtaining life insurance through your group plan can help increase awareness, boost loyalty, and support hiring and retention initiatives. If you offer proper insurance plans to your employees, the chances are that they will remain working for you in a grateful way because they would have a good backup plan which the can rely on. As a matter of fact, many employees when looking for a job make sure that the company offers insurance plans; if you don’t offer them, potential employees are more likely to move on and find another job offer.

3. It improves Employees’ Productivity

An ideal health status can impact an employee’s financial situation and increase productivity at work. According to the MetLife study, employees in bad health are more likely to report financial concerns. Once your employees feel safe and satisfied with the insurance plans you offer them; their productivity will increase because they will put their best effort to keep a job that gives them exactly what they need. One of the secrets of being a great employer and business owner is to keep your employees happy and safe as well as maintaining healthy relationships within the workplace.

As a conclusion, with the proper life insurance plan (among other group benefits) employees, will improve their financial and physical situation, wich will strengthen their relationship with their employers, and this will result in greater retention, loyalty and increased productivity. In turn, having a committed and productive workforce will also help businesses reach their goals and achieve long-term success.

Does your organization offer life insurance as an employee benefit? Let Lewis & Palmer be part of your decision-making process! We can help you determine the best way to offer coverage that fits your budget and meets your employees’ needs.

Don’t miss out on small business health care tax credits

If you own or manage a small business, you should know that covering at least one-half of employee health insurance premiums might make you eligible for a tax credit. This tax credit, known as the “small business health care tax credit”, applies to many small businesses as well as certain tax-exempt employers.

Small Business Health Care Tax Credit Details

The small business health care tax credit had a ceiling of 35% for small business owners in the tax years from 2010-2013. It topped out at 25% for diminutive tax-exempt employers in this time span. Yet the maximum credit jumped to 50% for small businesses that provided employee health insurance in the tax years 2014 and beyond. Small-sized tax-exempt employers enjoy a maximum credit of 35% from 2014 onward.

Which Types of Small Businesses Qualify for the Credit?

Small businesses that have 25 or fewer full-time employees qualify for the small business health care tax credit. Those that pay an average annual salary of $49,999 or less qualify. These employers must pay at least one-half of employee health insurance premiums in order to take advantage of the credit.

Breaking Down the Math: How the Small Business Health Care Tax Credit Helps

Consider a scenario in which a small business qualifies for a considerable small business health care tax credit. Let’s say the business in question is eligible for a 20% kick-back. If the business pays $50,000 per year to cover a portion of employee health care premiums, it will save a whopping $10,000 per year. The beauty of this tax credit is that small business employers that do not owe tax throughout the year are still eligible to carry the credit on to other tax years.

It gets even better: The amount of the health insurance premiums paid by the employer will be greater than the total credit, allowing the small business to claim a business expense deduction for cost of the premiums that exceed the value of the credit. In a nutshell, eligible small businesses can benefit from the small business health care tax credit in two ways: the credit itself and through a deduction.