Employee benefits are very important to people, just like trademarks are to companies. The media attention on the Washington Redskins for losing their trademark protection is huge. It is comparable to having employee benefits pulled out from under faithful employees. Many employees have had their benefits pulled since health care reform became law.
This shakes things up in the workplace.
Health care reform changes the playing field for businesses and their employees. To cover the new mandated coverage to make it a qualified health plan, new taxes and fees and other requirements, everyone is seeing drastic increases in their premiums. Large employers will make some adjustments and keep moving – assuming they have creative solutions by their current insurance advisor. Small employers can escape this rat race, at least a little, by dropping coverage offered to employees.
Is dropping the employee benefits the best option? - It depends.
Even big businesses are making changes with their benefits. Trader Joe’s® dropped coverage for part-time employees to get some relief, but also to give their employees more options and maybe qualify for their own tax credit. UPS® dropped spousal coverage so their spouse’s employers can cover them.
Businesses will have to make adjustments to their benefits offering with the new law, both large and small.
Small businesses could be doing the employees a favor by dropping the health coverage and going to the public or a private exchange. For those who qualify for a tax credit will see very affordable premiums. Those who do not will gain control and choose the plan of their liking, and fits nicely in their budget. This will bring positive change to the workplace.
Small businesses could also retain the group benefits and do a little thinking ‘outside of the box’ with their insurance advisor. A good employee benefits advisor will have some strategies up their sleeve to help employers control their cost and still provide value to their employees.
Being innovative to keep up with the times is key to the success of the employees that work for the company. Employers need to be innovative in order to do just that.
What does this have to do with the Redskins? Change!
To be frank, many will think the patent office’s decision is irrelevant today and the Redskins should be able to keep their trademark rights. The same goes with employers providing benefits to compete for quality employees.
We can complain all we want, but change is inevitable.