One of the first choices you must make when researching group health insurance options for your Arizona small business is whether you will use an agent or broker. This is an important question because the answer will determine the variety and possibly the quality of the plans that are presented to you.
But why choose either option if you can do your own research and pick your own plan? There are at least two good reasons.
Why Entrust Your Small Business Health Insurance to a Professional
Whether you have just one or two employees or several dozen, offering your current and new employees a variety of health insurance plans can provide you with that incentive needed to entice new talent and grow your business.
Do you find that your to-do list is growing, and the time available to complete those tasks is shrinking? You are not alone, this is a problem shared by many small business owners in Arizona. If researching and selecting a group health insurance policy for your employees is on that to-do list, the best way to get the job done without overburdening your schedule is to ask for help from a professional in the health insurance industry. A couple of quick meetings with an agent or broker to explain your needs and wants for your employee benefits package can save you hours of research on your own.
Health Insurance Industry Jargon
The jargon and terms in the health insurance industry can be overwhelming and confusing to even the savviest small business owner. For instance, do you know the following terms refer to, without the help of Google?
- Minimum participation requirements
- Employer minimum contributions
- Employer Tax Exemption
- "Cadillac Tax" on High-Cost Employer Plans
- Essential health coverage (prescriptions, lab work, emergencies, etc.)
These are just a few of the many expressions, options and terms that you need to be familiar with in order to get the right group health insurance plans for your small business.
The type of insurance that’s right for your business depends on several factors, such as company size, the needs of your employees, budget, the age of your employees, what additional perks you want to offer, and more. Calling in an agent or broker to help you make these decisions just makes sense.
Which is Better? Group Health Insurance Agent or Broker?
Now that we have established why your small business should call in reinforcements to select group health insurance, the next question is where do you go to get this help? Arizona business owners have two main choices: agent or broker. While both roles are similar in terms of the products they sell, the main differences are the representation and product variety.
A health insurance agent represents a single insurance company and only sells that company’s products. There is a built-in bias with insurance agents because they are selling you only the products they represent.
Conversely, a health insurance broker represents insurance products from numerous providers. As such, a broker will be more impartial than an agent. Brokers have access to a broader range of products and have more flexibility when it comes to personalizing options to suit your needs and budget.
Both agents or brokers offer group health insurance plans for small businesses. The key difference is that agents work for the insurance companies, while brokers work for the clients (i.e., you).
How a Broker Can Help You Find the Perfect Small Business Medical Insurance Plans
The major benefits of using a broker when researching group health insurance plans for small businesses is the unbiased guidance you will receive from them.
Your broker is less a salesman and more a friend trying to help.
Brokers love to explain terminology you don’t understand, lay out your plan options, answer questions, and walk you through the entire process, from shopping to comparing and quoting to implementing and ongoing support.
In fact, a broker is more like an insurance partner, because your health insurance broker will always be available to help with things like new enrollments, claims, billing, changing products, renewals, and more.
Another great thing about brokers is they are experts in the field. Brokers tend to have more have in-depth knowledge of the plans, laws, and regulations that could impact your company than single company agents.
Furthermore, health insurance brokers are experts at personalizing plans based on the needs of their clients, so they’ll take into account all the factors to find a perfect solution for your business.
Agent or Broker? The Choice is Clear.
Although navigating the muddy waters of group health insurance can be difficult on your own, the right broker can provide you with personal service, guide you through the process, and provide ongoing service as your company grows.
Owner Jerry Anderson can connect you to nationally recognized insurance carriers and work with you on a strategy that meets the unique needs of your business.