stephen.miller

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Stephen Miller, CEBS, is an online editor/manager for SHRM.

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Stephen Miller

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Member for
10 years 4 months

Articles by Stephen Miller

Workplace wellness programs can significantly lower health care costs by helping workers to better manage chronic diseases. However, encouraging workers to adopt healthier lifestyles may not noticeably reduce an employer's health costs or lead to lower net savings for otherwise healthy individuals, according to a new Rand Corp.

News Updates
January 16, 2014

Demand keeps compensation competitive; experience is a plus.

News Updates
January 3, 2014
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Only a quarter of organizations use their workplace benefits program to help recruit employees, according to survey findings released by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) in December 2013.

News Updates
December 30, 2013

Despite competing priorities, one-third of HR professionals in the U.S. (32 percent) have increased the time they spend educating employees about workplace benefits, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch's latest Workplace Benefits Report, based on an August 2013 nationwide survey of more than 1,000 companies of all sizes. The final sample was weighted back to representative proportions based on size.

News Updates
December 23, 2013
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For the third year in a row, chief financial officers (CFOs) in the U.S. cited rising health care costs as their No. 1 concern, according to the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2014 CFO Outlook survey.

Of the financial executives who participated in the annual survey of middle-market companies, nine out of 10 also said they expect their organization to increase or maintain the size of its workforce in 2014.

News Updates
December 19, 2013

With the November 2013 release of An Employer’s Guide to Cancer Treatment and Prevention, the nonprofit National Business Group on Health (NBGH) and National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) culminated a three-year initiative to help emplo

News Updates
December 6, 2013
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On the day before Thanksgiving, the Obama administration quietly announced plans to delay another part of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) Small Business Health Options Program, or SHOP, in states with a federally run health insurance marketplace.

News Updates
December 5, 2013

As the end of the year approaches, HR should remind employees with flexible spending accounts (FSAs) to determine whether they need to spend some or all of their unused funds before the end of the year (or extra grace period) to avoid forfeiting them.

News Updates
December 3, 2013
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As U.S. employers continue to grapple with the surge in wage and hour lawsuits, class-actions charging exempt-status misclassificationoften brought by former employeesare a growing concern, finds a survey report by labor law firm Littler Mendelson P.C.

November 13, 2013

Health flexible spending accounts (FSAs) are becoming more flexible. New federal guidance permits employers to allow workers to carry over unused amounts of up to $500 for expenses in the next year and still contribute up to $2,500 annually.

News Updates
November 11, 2013

Three national health organizations have published guidance for worksite wellness programs that use risk assessments and biometric screenings to collect health information from employees.

News Updates
October 30, 2013

Average base pay increases for 2014 will remain at 3 percent for the second year in a row in the U.S.—roughly one percentage point below pre-recession levels—according to the seventh annual Compensation Planning Survey by Buck Consultants.

News Updates
October 21, 2013

U.S. employers expect their health benefit cost per employee to rise by 4.8 percent, on average, in 2014, according to a survey by consultancy Mercer. Cost growth slowed to 4.1 percent in 2012, a 15-year low. The projected increase for 2014, while still relatively low, represents a slight uptick.


(Click on graph to view larger version)

News Updates
October 7, 2013

U.S. workers said that to make informed decisions about selecting health care coverage options they need a description of the available benefits, a comparison of how the cost of health insurance may change, and a comparison of coverage among available plans, according to the First Annual Transamerica Center for Health Studies Survey.

News Updates
October 2, 2013

U.S. employers were again surprised by another unexpected suspension of a provision of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA or ACA) when, on Sept. 11, 2013, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced there will be no penalty imposed on employers that fail to distribute to workers a notice about available coverage under state- and federal-government-run health insurance exchanges (collectively referred to by the government as the "health insurance marketplace"), scheduled to launch in October 2013.

News Updates
September 16, 2013

The cost of providing employee health care benefits at the largest U.S. employers is projected to increase 7 percent in 2014, according to survey results released Aug. 28, 2013, by the National Business Group on Health (NBGH), a nonprofit association of more than 265 large U.S. companies.

In response, the biggest corporations are continuing their shift to high-deductible consumer-directed plans and making other benefit design changes.

News Updates
September 10, 2013

A large number of American workers remain unaware of, confused about and unprepared for looming changes to their benefits coverage, according to the 2013 Open Enrollment Survey of 2,001 U.S. consumers, conducted in August 2013 for Aflac, a provider of voluntary insurance benefits.

News Updates
September 10, 2013

On Sept. 5, 2013, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service issued two proposed rules intended to streamline the information-reporting requirements for certain employers and insurers under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA or ACA).

News Updates
September 9, 2013

As more American employers turn to high-deductible health plans to reign in escalating health care expenses, many are offering health savings accounts (HSAs) in an effort to encourage workers to make cost-conscious health care decisions. But according to a recent survey by financial services firm Fidelity Investments, two-thirds (65 percent) of Americans who make household health-benefit decisions simply do not understand how an HSA works.

News Updates
August 26, 2013
As more Baby Boomers approach age 65, they are confronting the complexities of making first-time Medicare enrollment decisions.
 
“At many companies, retiring used to mean transitioning from your employer’s health plan to a retiree health plan,” said Paula Muschler, manager of the Allsup Medicare Advisor. “Now, rather than selecting from one or two employer-provided options, more individuals are faced with trying to navigate through dozens of different Medicare plan options,” Muschler said in a media release.
 
News Updates
August 15, 2013