Tag Archives: compensation

Webinar focuses on benefits and compensation management for healthcare workers during pandemic

In this Milliman webinar, consultants Lauren Busey, Heidi tenBroek, and Larry Daniels discuss results from the recent Milliman Northwest Healthcare COVID-19 Pulse Survey. The survey summarizes key actions local healthcare employers are taking to address employee benefits and compensation issues as a result of the current pandemic.

For more perspective on the survey, read Lauren’s article “Managing benefits and compensation for healthcare workers in the time of COVID-19.”

Compensation survey offers future employer benefits clues in COVID-19 environment

The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic has had a massive impact on the U.S. economy and workforce. Millions have been furloughed or laid off, while others have struggled to do their essential jobs or work from home amid limited child care, stay-at-home orders, and social distancing guidelines. Even as the nation slowly gets back to work, the pandemic will undoubtedly have long-lasting effects on the economy, and by extension on employee benefits.

The 14th annual Northwest Benefits Survey—which includes data collected from February to April 2020 from 138 organizations located in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington—captured the situation immediately before COVID-19 began affecting the United States. Despite the uncertainty of the moment, the observations from the 2020 Northwest Benefits Survey help clarify some strong trends that will likely have relevance in the future. From the expanded use of telehealth to the increasing importance of wellness benefits, employers may feel a need to reexamine their benefits in order to better support their employees and determine the way forward for their organizations during this global health crisis.

To learn more, read the article “Five key observations from the 2020 Northwest Benefits Survey” by Milliman’s David Evans.

Infographic highlights trending compensation benefits for healthcare workers during COVID-19 pandemic

Healthcare workers on the front lines of the COVID-19 crisis are treating patients around the clock to help them recover. As a result, many workers have fallen ill and been forced to quarantine indefinitely, while some have even lost their lives. In the United States, hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare organizations are adjusting their benefits and compensation policies to support their employees during these uncertain times.

The following infographic highlights results from the Milliman Northwest Healthcare COVID-19 Pulse Survey, which summarizes key actions local healthcare employers are taking to address issues in the face of the coronavirus pandemic. For more perspective on the survey and the benefits and compensation landscape, read Lauren Busey’s article “Managing benefits and compensation for healthcare workers in the time of COVID-19.”

Compensation trends heading into 2020

Offering employees convenience-based benefits and perks is an important strategy employers must consider to attract and retain top talent. This is especially true as costs for healthcare, childcare, and other necessary goods and services continue to rise while salary budgets remain relatively tight. In this article, Milliman’s David Evans highlights the following benefit trends that are likely to continue into 2020 and beyond.

Compensation trends to recruit and retain employee talent

With unemployment in the United States at near a 50-year low, employers need to find novel ways to attract new employees and keep their workforce engaged. Creating competitive compensation packages that ensure employee satisfaction must reach beyond pay to more comprehensive views of what workers want from their companies and jobs.

What are seven trends that are key for employers to consider in the current labor market?

7. Engagement

Research has consistently shown that keeping employees engaged is the key to running a successful business.

6. Corporate social responsibility

Workers want to work for a company that supports their values.

5. Pay equity

Perceptions of pay equity can erode employee engagement and trust in management.

4. Minimum wage

In recent years, the effective minimum wage in some areas in the United States has outpaced inflation and grown even faster than typical wages.

3. Hot jobs

Salaries for hot jobs are moving at a more rapid pace than the rest of the market.

2. Employee financial wellness/well-being

Employee financial wellness and well-being initiatives stand to benefit a large number of employees.

1. Total rewards

A company’s ability to attract and retain the best employees depends to a large extent on other pay components in the total rewards package.

To read more about these seven trends in compensation, read this Milliman Insight article by Lauren Busey and Larry Daniels.

DoL proposed new overtime pay threshold for white collar exemptions

The U.S. Department of Labor (DoL) released a new proposed rule that would raise the minimum salary requirements for exemptions for executive, administrative, and professional employees under the overtime pay requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Under the proposed rule, the minimum salary threshold would increase to $35,308/year ($679/week), up from the current $23,660/year ($455/week).

In 2016, the DoL issued a final rule that raised the current threshold—which had not increased since 2004—to $47,476/year ($913/week) (see Client Action Bulletin 16-2). In 2017, a federal district court invalidated the rule, but the DoL, under a new administration, appealed to the Fifth Circuit. The DoL also asked the court to hold the appeal while the agency reconsidered proposing an appropriate salary level.

The new proposed rule also would:

• Increase the total annual compensation requirement for “highly compensated employees” from the current $100,000 to $146,414
• Commit the DoL to periodically review the salary threshold via the proposed rulemaking process every four years
• Allow employers to use nondiscretionary bonuses and incentive payments (including commissions) to satisfy up to 10% of the salary level threshold

The proposed rule makes no changes to the FLSA’s “duties tests.”

Following publication in the Federal Register, the proposed rule will be open for public comment for 60 days. (As of March 19, the proposed rule has not been published.) The DoL hopes to finalize the rule in time to apply it beginning in January 2020.

Employers should begin to evaluate how the rule will affect their pay and job classification practices with an eye toward changes that may be necessary if a final rule applies in 2020. In addition, employers should consider the effects any final rule might have on their benefit programs (e.g., overtime compensation under a retirement plan’s contribution formula and differing contribution requirements for healthcare coverage based on FLSA exempt/nonexempt status) and plan accordingly.

Please contact your Milliman consultant for additional information about the DoL’s proposed rule.