Small Businesses Work To Provide Health Benefits
BusinessWeek Online on March 16 profiled efforts by three small businesses to provide health benefits for employees "despite the pressures and costs." Summaries appear below.
- Butler-Berger, a Texas-based real estate company with 50 employees, in 1998 entered an agreement with Gevity, a Florida-based human resources company with a network of hundreds of thousands of workers, to provide health and other benefits for Butler employees. Under the agreement, Butler pays Gevity $950 per employee annually, and "Gevity technically becomes Butler's employer," which allows Butler workers to "receive a menu of health and other benefits" at a lower cost by "taking advantage of the economies of scale," BusinessWeek Online reports.
- Commonwealth Industries, a Virginia-based industrial services company with 18 employees, since 1990 has reduced health benefits, increased fees, changed carriers and policies and has asked workers to contribute more to the cost of premiums.
- Micromain, a Texas-based software company with 43 employees, in 2003 began to offer workers a high-deductible health plan with a health savings account in addition to a traditional PPO. About 60% of Micromain employees have enrolled in the HSA, which costs 30% to 40% less than the PPO, and workers who remain in the PPO pay the difference (Perman, BusinessWeek Online, 3/16).