Benefits Solutions

Benefits Solutions


As an employer, the cost to attract, hire, and retain high-quality employees is so much more than just their salary. For many potential employees, the benefits package you offer can make or break their decision to accept your offer. In fact, a strong enough benefits package can cause them to sign on with your organization despite several other competitive offers and maybe even at a lower salary.


You can envision it like selling a home:

  • Four Walls & Roof = the salary (the core benefit of owning a home)
  • Doors, Locks, Security System = health & safety benefits (medical insurance)
  • Stored Monetary Value = investment opportunity (401k)
  • Dependable Location = a base to explore from & grow (vacation time, education)
  • Backyard & Den = recreation & entertainment (break room, drinks, food)
  • Community = culture (employer culture and brand)

Benefits are everything besides the most basic reason for getting a job. They frame the entire recruiting process as well as the employee experience once they’re on board.

What Are Employee Benefits? explains them as follows:

Employee benefits are benefits offered to employees from employers, such as health insurance, disability insurance and a retirement plan, to name a few. Benefit plans can add approximately 30 to 40 percent cost to the base pay of most employees. However, offering employee benefits can shape a company’s culture and affect employee retention -- as well as the quality of talent attracted to a business. Some benefits are mandatory by federal law and some aren’t -- but are deeply important to employees.”

In other words, employee benefits are everything other than money that an employer uses to attract, hire, retain, and delight their employees. In addition, those added benefits can shape the organization’s culture and brand.

Here’s a List of Potential Employee Benefits

Not an exhaustive list as you can turn anything you want into a benefit…mid-afternoon ping pong match anyone?

Mandated Benefits (by State or Federal Regulations…varies by State)

Health Insurance
Prescription Coverage
Dental Insurance
Family and Medical Leave Act
Minimum Wage
Paid Sick Time
Workers Compensation


Vacation Time
Paid Holidays
Educational Stipends & Incentives
Hazard Pay
Extended Maternity/Paternity/Adoption Leave
Work Breaks
Retirement Savings – 401k, ESOP, Pension, Profit Sharing, Stock Options, etc.
Company Car
Discounts on Company Products
Affinity Discounts with Outside Companies
Relocation Expenses
Elaborate Break Rooms
Paid Community Volunteering
Working Remotely or From Home
Elective Benefits – Accidental Death & Dismemberment, supplemental health, critical illness, life insurance, additional disability insurance, identity theft protection, FSA, HSA, Childcare accounts, educational savings, wellness discounts, .

The options are almost limitless but keep in mind that most of these have an expense associated with them and can ultimately affect how your workforce views their place of work, their duties, and their productivity.


What are the Benefits of Providing Good Benefits?

  • Attract High Quality Personnel
  • Retaining Personnel and Reducing the Massive Costs of Employee Turnover
  • Delighting Personnel Improves Productivity
  • Reinforcing Organizational Culture Creates a Cohesive Team
  • Reaffirms the Organization’s Brand Image Internally & Externally

Current Trends Dramatically Influencing Employer Benefits Programs

Millennials are in and Baby Boomers are on the way out. A 2014 article in the Washington Post reaffirmed a statistic that 10,000 baby boomers retire every day. The turnover in the workforce is dramatically influencing the ‘tastes’ for certain types of benefits. No, all millennials don’t want bean bag chairs and free latte’s. However, certain benefits such as paid community volunteering time and work-from-home options are growing in popularity, rapidly.

Economic contraction and growth cycles have been extreme over the past decade. From the bursting of the sub-prime bubble to the unprecedented bull market for stocks that followed, investment accounts around the world have shrunk and swelled. Factor in new investment opportunities such as crypto currency and it seems like the wild west all over again. Employer-sponsored investment and retirement plans are evolving rapidly and so are the corresponding regulations that speak to the responsibilities of plan administrators.


Governmental regulation continues to be one of the largest influencers of employer benefits packages. States electing to increase minimum wage, equal-pay for equal-work initiatives, and paid sick time for hourly worker mandates are all moving targets that must be watched closely by employers to make certain they are in compliance and anticipated changes in expenses are budgeted for.

Let’s focus briefly on the 800-pound gorilla in the room, ACA-compliant health insurance plans. Regulations such as the Affordable Care Act, medical cost inflation, the aging of the Baby Boomer generation, and increasing rates of chronic illnesses such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease are all conspiring to raise the overall cost of hiring and squeezing profit margins.

These plans have required a massive amount of attention from employers and HR professionals ever since the ACA was signed into law. In fact, they will continue to because they are typically the single most expensive piece of your employee compensation package outside of wages and salaries.

Willis Towers Watson released a projection in late 2017 that US employers should expect health care costs to rise by 5.5% in 2018, up from a 4.6% increase in 2017.

This holds true even if you choose to not offer coverage because the penalties for not offering minimum coverage are growing. It is the hope of some that relief will come from the Trump administration but much of the regulation remains intact following repeated attempts to repeal it completely and then subsequently adjust some of the internal mandates and penalties.

All of these trends point to one clear conclusion…


Employers will need to work with benefits professionals that provide SOLUTIONS to help bend the cost curve while preserving a comparable level of coverage and benefits for their employees!

What’s Wrong with Purchasing a Popular Benefits Product that Fills a Need?


Nothing is wrong with identifying a need and addressing it using a readily available and widely distributed product or service. In fact, we use these types of products and services within many of our recommended benefits program structures. However, solely relying on these types of solutions can cause your organization some major issues. They include out-of-control increases in cost every year, blanket reductions in benefits offered, gaps created between one benefit product and another, etc. Especially in this day and age, employers offering benefits programs need to keep an eye on more than just addressing the needs of their workforce in the present. Long-term trends in behavior and expenses can spell disaster just like a small leak can eventually turn into a massive flood.


What are Benefits Solutions?

Everything previously discussed is a benefit or a product. Each one comes with its’ own positives and negatives, costs, and other considerations. For that reason, you need to take a calculated approach when deciding whether to include each one in your benefits program and how to structure those offerings. And in some cases, you will need to think outside the box to provide them in a cost-effective and productive way. Benefits Solutions are program offerings that specifically target your desired results while keeping the focus on cost-effectiveness and long-term sustainability.

If you’ve noticed a common thread throughout all the sections above, it’s that the world of employee benefits is complex and it’s only going to get more so. Add in the fact that every organization is unique…with unique needs, employees, brands, cultures, etc. This means that your Benefits Professional needs to bring tailored Solutions to the table, not just products. Your benefits program should work as a just that, a program…not a collection of random offerings you think might work together. And at the end of the day, that program needs to be cost-effective and sustainable over the long-term. If it isn’t, you run the risk of losing employee confidence as well as brand image and competitiveness.

What Are Some Examples of Benefits vs. Benefits Solutions?


Treadstone Focuses on Benefits Solutions.

Our goal is to build a Comprehensive Benefits Program that is tailored to your organization’s needs and achieves your desired goals. Benefits Solutions are specifically designed insurance policies, products, and support services that meet these needs. To take it further, the collection of these policies, products, and services need to work together in concert so there are no ‘holes’ or ‘gaps’. Treadstone takes a holistic approach to this process.


We focus on

  • How your organization prefers to operate
  • What your expense trends have been
  • Trends within your industry
  • What sets your organization apart and makes it unique
  • Insurance and Healthcare marketplace trends
  • Alternative Insurance Structures
  • Alternatives to Insurance All-Together

We then provide Solutions

  • Products that will form the backbone of the program
  • Additional Services or targeted products to fill gaps
  • Benefit level options to help control costs and/or preserve capital
  • Expense reduction solutions or services
  • Alternative Insurance Structures to fit specific needs or business goals


A Benefits Program that meets your organizational needs and goals, keeps a tight rein on expenses, and focuses on long-term sustainability and dependability.

Once I Choose the Right Benefits Solutions, I’m Done Right?

NOT SO FAST! Harkening back to the home example at the beginning, Benefits Solutions and Programs require routine maintenance to make sure that they’re operating properly. Coverage and what is covered needs to be updated, new business practices need to be factored into the overall program, changes in the workforce can require a reassessment of assumptions and industry/economic changes can influence what solutions are available and for what price.

That is why Treadstone Risk Management focuses on building a long-term relationship with its’ clients to help with both the construction and yearly maintenance of the solutions we provide.

We want your business or organization to keep performing at a high level and hopefully growing. In that way, Treadstone is your partner. If you succeed, so do we!

TAKE THE NEXT STEP Schedule a Consultation