For many businesses, health insurance can be complex, difficult to navigate and tough to understand. There are constant updates because of policy reform that you have to stay on top of. Carriers will often make changes to the benefit plans including what’s covered within the plan and costs associated with it. Lastly, what your employees need or want in a health insurance plan will often change over time. As people age, start families, or have children, their health insurance needs change — as does the importance of getting coverage to protect yourself, your employees, and the ones they love.
Working with an insurance agent can help alleviate some of these challenges at a free or minimal cost to you. But, because the healthcare industry is so dynamic and health insurance can sometimes be a sensitive subject, it’s important to be selective when choosing an agent. You want to work with someone you not only can trust, but who your employees respect as well.
Here are 5 things to consider when choosing an insurance agent.
- Reputation: Before selecting an agent, be sure to do your homework. Check the reviews on both LinkedIn and Yelp to see what others are saying about an insurance agent’s reputation, service, and skill. Talk to friends, former coworkers, or people you trust about their recommendations for health insurance brokers as well. At the end of the day, you want to work with a trusted agent who has a strong reputation both online and offline.
- Knowledge: Take a look at their website to get a better understanding of the types of products and policies they offer as well as their Yelp to see if there is a trend with any businesses or verticals they work with. If education is important to you and your business, see if they have a blog, look at their social media channels, and sign up for their newsletters. This will help you get a better understanding if they value knowledge sharing and continuing education within the industry.
- Experience: First, make sure the agent you want to work with has their health insurance license. Next get a better understanding of their credentials, expertise, and how long they’ve been in business. You want to work with someone who has the experience you can trust.
- Value Added Services: Are you looking for any speciality services when selecting an insurance agent? For example, is education important to your business and your employees? Do you want someone who can help implement a wellness program? Or do you want an agent with HR services that can easily implement technology into the benefits plan selection making it easier for your employees to access their benefits, change plans, and more? Consider any additional, long -term services you may want from an agent before making a selection.
- Communication & Trust: Since you can only make changes to a benefit plan during open enrollment, it’s important to have an open communication line with the agent you’re working with. Essentially, they should be more or a partner — someone whose opinion you value and trust that they are there to help your business and employees get the richest benefit plans at a cost you can stand by. Whether they use industry jargon or straight talk, it’s important to work with an agent who you and your employees can freely communicate with.
If you are looking for a new insurance agent or even a second opinion on your current benefit plans, please don’t hesitate to contact us. Be sure to check out our Yelp reviews and get your free compliance checklist.