Posted by bad_luck on 10/8/2013 6:17:00 PM (view original):
Posted by examinerebb on 10/8/2013 5:47:00 PM (view original):So, in this hypothetical, you're running the company. Last year, without penalty, you could have dropped coverage for your employees but didn't. This year there is a penalty if you do. And now you're more likely to drop benefits? That makes no sense.
I think the possibility exists, with a much larger likelihood than it did before. I think that, if I were running the company, I would seriously consider it. As for what someone other than me will decide to do, I can't tell you that. We'll see.
If you do, your good employees will leave. Most companies are not dropping benefits for their employees.
We've already been on this merry-go-'round. Last year, there was no alternative for my employees. I would have, in their minds, been removing their ability to get healthcare altogether. This year that is not the case. This year the industry has dipped, we have had four rounds of layoffs in the last four months, and the remaining employees are just happy to be employed. They also have nowhere else to go, because the dip has been industry-wide. It is a specialized-skill industry, so there is no option for a semi-lateral move to a different career. It would be very easy for me to say "Look, we're as tired of the layoffs as you all are. We've pared the staff down so much that we all we have left is the core group of employees that we simply can't afford to lose. But, as we all know, there is also no turnaround coming for the industry in the near future. So, in order to insure we don't have our fifth round of layoffs this year, we will no longer be offering employer-subsidized healthcare. We know that this is an unwelcome change, but we are very excited about the new options being offered through the Affordable Care Act, and our HR staff is ready to help walk you through all of your options."
Now I keep my staff, cut costs now, and keep costs down in the future because I can start hiring later than anyone else who didn't follow suit does. The good employees won't leave - they have nowhere to go.