Two-thirds (65 per cent) of plan sponsors said they have a specific objective for their health benefits plan in the coming year, according to the 2019 Sanofi health-care survey.

The survey found 23 per cent of plan sponsors strongly agreed they have specific objectives, a 13 per cent increase from last year’s survey. 

“Having a plan objective and a workplace wellness culture are extremely important,” said Art Babcock, former senior vice-president of health and benefits at Aon and a member of Sanofi Canada’s advisory board. “The survey results tell us that the absence of these two items hurts the perceived value of the benefits plan.”

Read: Fewer employers making changes to benefits plan design: Sanofi survey

When it comes to benefits plan design, 50 per cent of plan sponsors said they’re most involved in the determination process. About a quarter (26 per cent) said their benefits consultant or advisor is most involved, followed by their insurance carrier (24 per cent).Nearly half (43 per cent) of plan sponsors said their benefits consultant or carrier always provides information about any potential implications of benefits plan changes. Some 38 per cent said they receive this information most of the time, while 19 per cent never do. This latter finding rises to 28 per cent among employers with fewer than 50 employees.

“We continue to encourage employers to tie benefits plans, wellness and organizational health to overall business objectives,” said Jennifer Elia, assistant vice-president of integrated health solutions at Sun Life Financial and an advisory board member. “The stronger that connection, the more effectively we will meet the needs for the future — where new approaches for supporting employee health are considered business priorities.” 

Read: The legal risks of drug plan design changes

Copyright © 2019 Transcontinental Media G.P. Originally published on benefitscanada.com

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