Small businesses have always faced adversity, but even more so the past couple years. Lockdowns, supply issues, inflation and labor shortages have caused one-third of small businesses to close their doors since January 2020.1
Yet many small businesses have hung on—and even thrived—during the pandemic. They’ve played an important role in supporting their local communities—and in return, their local communities have supported them. But the adversity isn’t over yet. Here are three top challenges small businesses may face in 2022—and how voluntary benefits can help.
1. New COVID-19 variants
It seems like a new variant hits the headlines every few months. Not only does this cause concern for your customers, but your employees as well.
An unexpected health crisis can quickly shock employees with the gaps left by their core benefits. Deductibles, copays and balance billing can add up fast on top of everyday expenses. Supplemental health insurance can help your employees fill the gaps and be better prepared for future health events.
Benefits are paid in addition to core benefits employees may receive. Unlike like core benefits, supplemental health insurance pays cash benefits directly to employees, not to doctors or hospitals. This means employees can use the money in any way—whether it’s covering medical bills or household bills.
2. High employee turnover
You may be familiar with the “Great Resignation,” which refers to the current trend of working Americans voluntarily changing jobs. The quit rate for professional and business services occupations is 4.1% as of June 2021, up from about 3% in February 2020.2
With employer turnover on the rise and cultural attitudes toward employment being impacted by the pandemic, small businesses should prioritize putting together a benefits package that will help them retain talent over the next five years and beyond. With voluntary benefits, enhancing your benefits package doesn’t even need to impact your bottom line. That’s because employers can choose to pay all, some or none of their employees’ affordable premiums.
3. Adapting to a new way of working
Lockdowns meant many employees began to work remotely from home, and according to studies, many employees want to keep it that way. Given the choice, more than half of employees who work from home want to keep working from home even after the pandemic.3
If your employees are remote or work a hybrid schedule (working some days at home and some days on site), it’s important to keep your employees engaged even when they’re away from the worksite. From a benefits perspective, virtual benefits education and enrollment can help you achieve this.
Here at Washington National, we offer virtual enrollment solutions for remote employees. Our agents are equipped to provide employee benefits education and enrollment via video chat or phone call. No matter where your employees are located, we can help them prepare for the financial impact of unexpected illness, injury or loss of life.
We’re here for you and your employees!
Are you interested in learning more about our benefits and virtual enrollment solutions? Fill out this form to get started!
1Austin American Statesman, Fact check: Have one-third of US small businesses closed during pandemic?, https://www.statesman.com/story/news/politics/politifact/2021/06/08/kamala-harris-small-business-closures-covid-fact-check/7602531002/, June 2021.
2Business Wire, Majority of Americans say their workplace benefits will play a more critical role in future job selection, according to a new Voya survey, https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20210930005629/en/Majority-of-Americans-say-their-workplace-benefits-will-play-a-more-critical-role-in-future-job-selection-according-to-new-Voya-survey, September 2021.
3Pew Research Center, How the Coronavirus Outbreak Has—and Hasn’t—Changed the Way Americans Work, https://www.pewresearch.org/social-trends/2020/12/09/how-the-coronavirus-outbreak-has-and-hasnt-changed-the-way-americans-work/, December 2020. LIMITED-BENEFIT POLICIES. Supplemental health insurance policies have limitations and exclusions. For costs and complete details of coverage, contact an agent.