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Guardian Survey: More Than Half of Small Business Employers Who Offer Benefits Encounter Challenges During Open Enrollment Season
Date:10/27/2008

Two-Fifths Plan to Take Action to Control Healthcare Costs

Engaging Employees and Providing Clear, Easy-to-Understand Information Are Key Challenges

NEW YORK, Oct. 27 /PRNewswire/ -- More than half of small business employers who offer employee benefits encounter challenges during the enrollment process, according to a recent study from The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America (Guardian), a leading provider of employee and voluntary benefits to small and midsize companies.

The study, conducted just prior to the volatile events on Wall Street, examined small business owners' (1 to 100 employees) decisions about employee benefits. The survey release coincides with the beginning of the fall open enrollment season when millions of employees make important decisions about their benefits for the coming year.

The study revealed that more than 40% of employers plan to take action to manage benefit costs.

-- About 22% said they would absorb medical benefit costs and 20% would

absorb non-medical benefit costs. Approximately the same percentage

would either shift more/all costs to employees or cut back on medical

employee benefits while slightly fewer would for non-medical benefits.

-- 33% said they would use a combination of the above approaches.

-- Nearly half (45%) of small business employers would offer benefits on a

voluntary basis.

"Facing an economic downturn and a tightened credit market, disposable income is tight for everyone," said Elena Wu, 2nd vice president of Group Marketing and Worksite for Guardian. "Employees will have to make important decisions and tradeoffs around disposable income, but one thing everyone should maximize is benefits through the workplace - they provide immeasurable value during these times. With employers understandably pre-occupied with business concerns, support for helping employees understand their options i
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SOURCE The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

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