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Despite the increasing cost of benefits, most employers plan to continue to offer them to employees in the future and subsidize them as much as possible in order to attract and retain talent, a new survey shows.
And while most employers expect benefit cost sharing to double by 2010, a growing group of "progressive" employers plans to adopt strategies to address cost drivers, such as wellness programs, consumer-driven health plans and integrated health and disability management initiatives, the survey shows.
These progressive employers, which currently represent about 11% of all employers, is expected to grow to 50% by 2010, according to "Employee Benefits: 2006 & Beyond," a new study released Thursday by Prudential Financial Inc. of Newark, N.J., and which is based on an online survey conducted in February of 1,218 randomly selected benefits decisionmakers nationwide.
The survey also found that as benefit choices become more complex and as employees are asked to shoulder a greater share of their cost burden, employers plan to seek external guidance from benefits brokers, insurers and even employees themselves to help them build the best solutions for their companies.
In addition, because benefits are becoming a substantial component of company expenses, employers expect to enlist expertise from other departments--such as risk management and finance--in making benefit procurement decisions.
Among other significant findings of the survey: