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One of the most important factors in a successful benefits enrollment process is ensuring your employees are well-educated about their options. As Dennis Sladky, Vice President, Consumer Experience, puts it, “You might think your biggest hurdle at enrollment is introducing something new… but chances are your employees still don’t understand the basics.”

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Last month, just before the holidays, the IRS published Notice 2015-87, which outlines several key updates to how employer-sponsored insurance plans are administered. Fortunately, most of the new rules allow for a transition period to give employers adequate time to comply. To save you the time of reading all 31 pages of the Notice, we are providing you with five important highlights from the new rules.

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Late last month, as many of us finished up holiday gift buying, Congress offered up a gift of its own: Lawmakers passed a bipartisan funding bill to keep the federal government open, including a provision to put a two-year delay on the Cadillac tax under the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

The tax, originally set to go into effect in 2018, places a 40% levy on high-cost employer-sponsored health plans ($10,200 for individuals, $27,500 for families). It’s hugely unpopular among politicians, employers, insurance carriers—pretty much everyone except economists—so delaying it until 2020 easily won congressional support.

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Given the trend toward consumer-driven health and benefits plans, it’s important for employers to understand how employees are exercising their new ability to choose which options they think are best. Fortunately for you and your HR team, the bswift benefits technology not only automates the process for consumers but also provides insights into the choices they are making.

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In early 2016, employers with 50 or more full-time equivalent employees are required to submit new tax forms to employees and the IRS for the 2015 plan year. To help employers and HR professionals, Don Garlitz, Senior Vice President, bswift, recently sat down with Employee Benefit News to provide answers and clarification to questions surrounding the Affordable Care Act. In the video, Don provides explanations to key compliance questions including: Should taxpayers receive Form 1095 if they are not covered? What effects do employer wellness programs have on reporting plan affordability to the IRS? And more.

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It was a nice change of scenery (and temperature) to travel from Chicago to Los Angeles on December 4 for our roundtable discussion about the impact that technology can have on ACA compliance.

As a backdrop to the discussion, I shared several data points from our latest Benefits Study—specifically employer attitudes and adoption rates regarding defined contribution health care solutions and private insurance exchanges, high deductible health plans and workplace wellness programs. All of those plan designs and health promotion programs have grown year over year, not coincidentally, in tandem with increasingly complex ACA mandates.

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We’re pleased to see our client The Cheesecake Factory is among a handful of employers featured in a recent Wall Street Journal article article about how employees benefit from decision-support tools like Ask Emma.

It’s great to see our clients featured in the media; we bswifters feel privileged to play a part in their success, like when helping their employees make sound benefits choices.

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The keys to effective benefits communication are clarity, convenience and engagement. If you aren’t providing all three, your employees are likely missing valuable information. Fortunately, the bswift Video Solutions team can create customized videos to make sure your employees don’t miss a thing.

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Waters is a global technology company focused on improving people’s health and well-being through scientific innovations. Many of the world’s most recognized brands rely on Waters to ensure the quality and safety of their products. To help support its 3,000+ U.S.-based employees, the Waters North American benefits team relies on bswift...

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How do Groupon, Radio Flyer, Lou Malnati’s and CareerBuilder create a corporate culture that aligns with their core values and principals? Watch this 12-minute video to learn why...

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Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago is a US News & World Report Top 10 U.S. pediatric hospital focused on the research, prevention and treatment of childhood diseases. The mission of Lurie Children’s benefits team is to support the hospital’s 5,000-plus employees...

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With 156,000 customers in 36 countries, Iron Mountain is the world’s go-to company for the secure storage and management of important documents and data. Employee loyalty plays a critical role in Iron Mountain’s success...

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We received a number of thoughtful questions during our July webcast, “Compliance 101: The Risks and Practical Realities of Producing Form 1095,” and we’d like to share our responses to some of them.

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Over the years, our clients have helped us to grow, enhance our technology and become who we are today. In this video, bswifters take a candid look back at the company’s early challenges...

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One of the great features of today’s workforce is its diversity, including how common it is to have multiple generations in the same place—each with different needs, concerns and challenges. In this video, Jessica Moser, VP, Channel Development Group, Voluntary & Worksite Benefits, MetLife, discusses...

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Recently, wellness attracted the interest of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), prompting it to file three cases alleging that employer wellness programs violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Watch as Brad Wolfsen...

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The typical COBRA beneficiary costs employers far more in claims expenses than an employee’s cost of coverage. Andrea Riggs, Director, Communications and Partner Marketing, GetInsured, discusses...

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The results of bswift’s annual wellness study are in! In this video, Brad Wolfsen, Senior Vice President of bswift, discusses the results of this most recent study...

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As health care costs rise, improving the value of health benefits spending remains high on the agendas of most major corporations. In this video...

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Starting in January 2016, large employers must distribute new Form 1095 tax documents to all full-time and covered part-time employees, due the same time as W-2s. Watch as Don Garlitz...

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