Businessolver®, the leader in SaaS-based benefits technology and services, today announced the introduction of the Businessolver Benefits Pulse™, an interactive dashboard providing insight into the latest workplace benefits trends as impacted by COVID-19. This dashboard is populated weekly from data derived from Businessolver’s proprietary benefits technology, Benefitsolver®. This information provides employers, brokers, advisors and many more, with a snapshot of the workplace regarding loss of benefits or change in status due to the pandemic.
“This has been a very uncertain time for employers across the country, facing difficult decisions in how to manage their workforce and employer-sponsored benefits,” said Rae Shanahan, Chief Strategy Officer at Businessolver. “Within our own client base, we saw a need for answers – HR teams seeking information to make the best possible decisions for their unique situation. This Benefits Pulse was born out of that need, providing easy access to workplace benefits trends we are seeing take place and more importantly, change, every single day.”
The Benefits Pulse details important workplace benefits trends including percent change for those in an active, COBRA or leave of absence status. For example, at launch, there was a 245% increase in the number of individuals in a Leave of Absence status since March 16. The data, which fluctuates daily, is available by industry and state. Additionally, the dashboard monitors the percent change of individuals who have current coverage in an employer-sponsored medical plan since March.
A need for more benefits options
Since March 16, we have seen a 55% increase of individuals moving into an offboarded status – moving into a benefits ineligible status or terminated from employment. In analyzing these results, Businessolver saw a need for greater benefits education and resources for those employees who were being offboarded from their current employer.
To create access to these resources and help educate individuals on their benefits options upon loss of employment, Businessolver has, as of today, opened their MyChoice™ Market benefits marketplace to all consumers who have recently lost coverage. The MyChoice Market provides access to comprehensive health insurance coverage options, including medical, vision, and dental, including ACA-compliant plans, Medicare plans and other complementary, supplemental products. Additionally, it includes free complimentary access to licensed Benefits Advisors to help employees research, compare and select best-fit plans.
Previously, the MyChoice Market was a benefits resource available only for those individuals working part-time for a current Businessolver client or for individuals coming off a Businessolver client’s employer-sponsored plan. By going direct to the consumer, Businessolver is making their MyChoice Market available to anyone who recently lost health and welfare benefits.
“The economic whiplash we are currently experiencing is unprecedented and has left many individuals without benefits, possibly for the first time,” said Sherri Bockhorst, Businessolver’s SVP of Product Strategy and Innovation. “These people have been dependent on employer-sponsored benefits and may not know where to turn in order to get coverage for themselves or their families. We want to help bridge that gap and ensure they have access to affordable coverage, now and in the future.”
Creating unique funding opportunities for employers
In addition to opening up the MyChoice Market to all individuals losing employer-sponsored coverage, Businessolver also worked with its current client base to find new funding options for those facing large layoffs but wanting to keep their terminated or furloughed employees enrolled in health coverage during this health pandemic.
Using their MyChoice™ Accounts platform, Businessolver implemented a post-employment HRA that allows employers to fund an individual’s account to then be used by individuals to purchase individual health coverage or cover the cost of COBRA premiums. This allowed greater flexibility for individuals who previously may have only received a COBRA subsidy for a limited time and then been required to pay the full premium at a much higher cost. Additionally, use of a COBRA subsidy often eliminated those offboarded employees from the opportunity to receive the government subsidy through a public marketplace. The post-employment HRA preserved that opportunity.
“Our goal since the beginning of this situation has been to help our clients create the softest landing for those individuals who were losing employment or entering a benefits ineligible status,” said Bockhorst. “The data revealed through our Benefits Pulse, helped us quickly assess the difficult decisions ahead. By finding alternative options for those facing terminations, we can help ensure that all individuals have access to healthcare coverage in a time when they need it most.”