As a small business owner, you have to wear many hats. One of those hats requires that you manage the health and well-being of your employees. Another is keeping up with the constantly changing landscape of HR compliance.
Let’s look at employee health, first. By doing simple things like promoting healthy eating habits, you can encourage a productive work-life balance.
Manage the Well-Being of Your Employees
The following tips will help you manage the health and well-being of your staff:
- Implement a wellness program. Wellness programs can include anything from physical activity challenges to stress management workshops. Not only do they improve employee health and well-being, but they can also lead to reduced healthcare costs and increased productivity.
- Encourage employees to take breaks. Research shows that short breaks throughout the day can improve energy and focus. Encourage your employees to step away from their desks for a few minutes, even if it’s just to take a quick walk around the block.
- Encourage employees to disconnect from work. Employees need to disconnect from work when they’re not at the office. To help them achieve this, encourage staff to take a vacation, and discourage after-hours work emails and calls.
- Invest in employee training. Investing in employee training shows commitment to their development and growth which can lead to increased job satisfaction and encourage loyalty to the company.
- Offer flexible work options. Flexible work options, such as telecommuting and flexible hours, can improve work-life balance. Leading to increased productivity and decreased absenteeism.
- Create a positive work environment. A positive work environment is supportive and respectful. Employees should feel like they can openly communicate with their managers and co-workers. There should also be a focus on teamwork and collaboration.
- Recognize and reward employees. Recognizing and rewarding employees shows that you appreciate their hard work and dedication. This can lead to increased motivation and job satisfaction.
- Make sure your insurance covers mental health services. Mental health problems can lead to absenteeism, lost productivity, and increased healthcare costs. An insurance plan covering mental health services is important to ensure employees can get the help they need.
Bonus tip: Encourage employees to take advantage of employee assistance programs
Employee assistance programs (EAPs) offer free or discounted counseling services, legal assistance, and financial planning services. These programs can help employees manage stress and other personal issues, so don’t be afraid to suggest them.
Implementing even just a few of these tips can make a big difference in the well-being of your employees. By promoting a healthy work-life balance, you’ll not only improve employee morale, but you’ll also increase productivity and profitability.
Small Business Healthcare 101
To be able to understand what is needed to manage healthcare for your employees, it is important to know the basics of the Affordable Care Act.
Affordable Care Act (ACA)
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is a federal law that requires employers to provide health insurance to their employees. If you have 50 or more full-time equivalent employees, you must provide health insurance or pay the penalty.
If you have fewer than 50 full-time equivalent employees, you are not required to provide health insurance, but you may still want to offer health insurance to your employees.
The ACA requires employers to provide a minimum level of coverage, but there are some options for complying with the law. You can find more information about the ACA on the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services website.
Consider Your Health Insurance Options
If you have 50 or more full-time equivalent employees, you must provide health insurance to your employees or pay the penalty. If you have fewer than 50 full-time equivalent employees, you are not required to provide health insurance, but you may still want to offer health insurance to your employees.
There are several options for providing health insurance, including:
- Purchasing a health insurance policy from a private insurer
- Participating in a group health insurance plan
- Creating a self-insured health plan
- Joining an association health plan
Choose the Right Health Insurance Plan
Once you have considered your options for providing health insurance, you will need to choose the plan that is right for your business. There are several factors to consider when choosing a health insurance plan, including:
- The needs of your employees
- The cost of the plan
- The benefits offered by the plan
Manage Your Healthcare Costs
Once you have chosen a health insurance plan, manage your healthcare costs. There are several ways to do this, including:
- Negotiating with your health insurance provider
- Reviewing your healthcare bills for errors
- Asking your employees to pay a portion of their healthcare costs
Manage Your HR Costs
In addition to managing your healthcare costs, you will also need to manage your HR costs. There are some ways to do this, including:
- Outsourcing your HR functions
- Automating your HR processes
- Implementing an HRIS system
When it comes to choosing an HRIS, make sure you go with a solution that will integrate with your current systems. This will spare you from having to maintain duplicate entries in multiple systems, which can lead to errors and lost time. For example, TimeForge integrates with Workday and UltiPro. This allows small businesses to track their sales and labor in the same system while still enjoying the benefits of a full HRIS.
Additional Tips for a Successful Business
- Offer a competitive benefits package. To attract and retain the best employees, offer a competitive benefits package. Include health insurance, dental and vision coverage, and a retirement savings plan.
- Stay up to date on HR compliance. The laws and regulations governing HR are constantly changing. Stay up to date on the latest developments so you can avoid costly penalties. One way to do this is to sign up for your local HR association’s mailing list.
- Use employee self-service tools. Employee self-service tools, like an online benefits enrollment system, can help you save time and money. They also give employees more control over their benefits and make it easier for them to comply with the law.
- Communicate with your employees. Make sure you communicate regularly with your employees about their benefits and the changes in HR compliance. This will help them understand their rights and responsibilities, and make sure they are getting the most out of their benefits.
How Does Your Policy Comply with Healthcare and HR for Your Small Business?
There are a few key things to keep in mind when it comes to healthcare and HR compliance for your small business:
- First, make sure you have a clear and concise policy in place that outlines what is covered by your health insurance plan and what is not. This will help avoid any confusion or misunderstanding down the road.
- Next, make sure your employees are aware of your health insurance policy and what it covers. This includes ensuring that they understand any exclusions or limitations that may be in place.
- Then, keep up to date on all the latest changes and developments in healthcare and HR compliance. This includes staying up to date on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and making sure you comply with all applicable laws and regulations.
- Work with a trusted and experienced health insurance broker or agent who can help you navigate the complexities of healthcare and HR compliance. This will ensure that you get the best possible coverage for your small business while remaining compliant with all applicable laws and regulations.
Specifics for Healthcare Businesses
If you manage a small healthcare business, there are additional things to consider. Healthcare compliance is critical to protecting your business from potential legal liabilities and ensuring that your employees are treated fairly.
A comprehensive compliance program will help you identify risks and develop policies and procedures to avoid or mitigate those risks.
Healthcare compliance programs should address a range of issues, including:
- Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliance
- Anti-kickback laws
- Physician self-referral laws (Stark laws)
- False Claims Act
- State licensing and accreditation requirements
Developing and maintaining a healthcare compliance program requires a commitment from senior leadership and buy-in from all employees. Employees should be trained on the compliance program and policies, and there should be mechanisms in place to encourage reporting of potential violations.
There is no one-size-fits-all answer to what is the best way to manage healthcare and HR for your business, as the role of healthcare and HR management varies depending on the specific industry. However, in general, healthcare and HR management play an important role in ensuring the health and safety of employees, as well as providing support and resources to help them succeed in their roles.
For tips on maintaining labor compliance, check out our guide to fair workweek.