Benefits Basics for Employers: Employee Health Benefits for Non-Profits
You’ve no doubt heard that sponsoring an employee benefit plan can have a positive impact on your organization. But as a non-profit organization, you have some unique challenges that may make it seem challenging to successfully sponsor an employee benefit plan. The good news is, it is possible and there are many important reasons you should be doing it.
Non-Profits are Different
As a non-profit organization, your goal is to help. It may be helping people, animals or the environment, but the underlying idea is to make the world a better place. Your incentives are different than for-profit organizations, with a stronger focus on mission rather than money. You’re trying to provide the best support to your target audience.
As a result, non-profits typically have a different company culture. Your employees want to help, and the dynamics regarding compensation, rewards and career may be different than those working in comparable jobs in for-profit companies.
Why A Non-Profits Need Employee Benefits?
There are several good reasons to sponsor an employee benefit plan.
- Support your employees – Your employees spend their days supporting others. As a non-profit, intrinsically you want to help others. It only makes sense to also help your employees to be healthy and happy. Their work is challenging, and they need to have a good foundation of support in order to continue supporting others.
- Attract and retain employees – The employment landscape is competitive. Given that non-profits are less motivated by profit, wages may be lower than in for-profit companies. This means it can be harder to attract and retain good employees. Employees in non-profit may be willing to accept a lower wage because they believe in the cause they are working for, and to keep overhead low. However, a good employee benefits plan can tip the scales. Research has shown that in both for-profit and non-profit organizations, employees are willing to accept a lower wage if it comes with a quality benefits plan. Attracting and retaining good talent is crucial for the success of your non-profit.
- Contain costs, minimize absences – An employee benefit plan can help contain costs because it supports employees in getting health and medical attention when they need it. When covered under an employee benefit plan, employees are more likely to seek out preventative treatments (before things escalate) or paramedical and dental services that can keep them healthy. The result is fewer absences and a more engaged workforce.
Roadblocks to Sponsoring an Employee Benefit Plan
The cost of sponsoring an employee benefit plan can be a roadblock for any business, however, it’s even more so of a challenge for non-profit organizations. Non-profits often have an unpredictable revenue stream and the majority of the money is invested back into the mission, rather than for administrative or employee support. As a result, it’s even more of a challenge to earmark money to sponsor an employee benefit plan.
Another concern is finding the time to administer the plan. In many non-profits, employees wear multiple hats and there is never enough time in the day. Finding the time for an employee to administer the plan is yet another challenge.
Community Services Benefits Trust (CSBT)
The Community Services Benefits Trust is a non-profit trust that was developed to provide social service organizations with access to employee benefit plans. With GroupHEALTH as the administrator, the CSBT has a Board of Directors comprised of senior executives from the social service sector. As a result, the CSBT understands the challenges facing non-profits and has worked hard to secure quality employee benefits that are sustainable over the long term.
The CSBT uses their group buying power to keep plans affordable. By partnering with the CSBT, your costs are spread across the country. This means if your organization has a challenging year, you benefit from the better experiences of your colleagues. Likewise, if your organization has a good year, your experience benefits your colleagues. In insurance terms, this is called “pooling.” It embodies the philosophy that most non-profits have: help others.
The CSBT board champions the perspectives and needs of non-profits in the benefits sector. The CSBT has ensured that important enhancements are built into its employee benefit plans so that non-profit employees are supported. Examples included in CSBT plans include:
- Disability management services
- Access to an Employee and Family Assistance Program
- Wellness support
- Virtual healthcare
Good Advice is Key
Are you ready to introduce an employee benefit plan to your non-profit? Are you looking for a plan that supports the unique needs of a non-profit? Review your options with one of our licensed advisors on the phone or in-person or contact us for a comparison quote.
Whether you’re looking for extended health and dental coverage, disability coverage, or life and critical illness coverage, the CSBT and GroupHEALTH have affordable benefits packages that work as hard as you do.