3 things you need to know to recommend healthcare navigation to employers
The American workforce is less and less inspired by anything standard or expected when it comes to their work experience and work environment.
Therefore, creating and marketing a strong employer brand has become essential for HR professionals who wish to differentiate their organization as an employer of choice. Benefits Consultants can help clients achieve this goal by recommending the right mix of benefits options and personalized support, which can turn a standard benefits package into a highly valuable experience that supports all aspects of employee health and well-being.
Why is this important? In today’s hiring environment, the value of a positive benefits experience cannot be overlooked. Consider the fact that almost 80% of employees who have recently used the healthcare system have experienced an average of three challenges; this complexity is detrimental to the physical and mental well-being of employees. This could explain why only 29% of employees say they are very satisfied with their health benefits and only 66% say they feel any satisfaction.
How Healthcare Navigation Can Help Differentiate Your Customers
In the race for talent, you can help your clients differentiate their organization by offering healthy navigation.
Navigating healthcare is something employers can offer as part of their comprehensive benefits package. Most health navigation companies offer platforms that connect employee members to their covered care delivery options and help employees make better use of their health insurance.
However, only healthcare navigation coupled with care coordination minimizes complexity and acts as an extension of a client’s HR team, providing one-on-one support to employees and their families. This approach to navigation gives employees the information they need to make decisions and take action to achieve optimal healthcare outcomes. This results in more informed and efficient use of benefits, highly engaged health plan members, better health outcomes at lower cost, and a workforce that feels supported and cared for.
The ideal healthcare navigation partner can step in early in an employee’s journey, offering proactive support and clinical guidance with critical decisions such as identifying providers, managing complex diagnoses and treating claims. They also help streamline the administration of point solutions and increase employee usage of their benefits ecosystem.
3 things to know to recommend navigation
Your clients have a range of decisions to make when designing and managing a benefits program. As consultants, you can help them by understanding how navigating healthcare can bring together diverse and disparate offerings into a seamless experience for their organization, HR team, and employees. Below are the top three factors that benefits consultants said were paramount in choosing a navigation partner in a 2021 industry survey.
- Offers a single point of contact for employees The ideal navigation partner gives employees omnichannel access to their benefits via portal, mobile app and phone, and offers personal and empathetic support. Better access means more engagement and a better experience, making it more likely that employees will use their benefits appropriately.
- Supports employees with clinical expertise In addition to providing provider and claims support, the ideal healthcare navigation partner will provide employees with direct access to clinical experts who provide preventative recommendations and reactive advice that improves clinical outcomes. This focus ultimately leads to higher utilization of preventive care services, fewer hospital days, and fewer hospital readmissions.
- Demonstrates claims savings Healthcare navigation combined with care coordination reduces complexity for employees by helping them make informed decisions and better utilize their benefits. This approach, in turn, contributes to the reduction of healthcare claims costs. For example, healthcare navigation experts encourage the use of preventive care, help employees find providers in the network, and choose more cost-effective care sites, which generates a sustainable reduction in claims costs for employers.
As your clients begin to think and make decisions about benefits offerings for the coming year, you can demonstrate your expertise and value by helping them understand how navigating healthcare can improve their lives. employee engagement and satisfaction, and support talent retention and recruitment – all while strengthening their bottom line.
Veronica Knuth is Director of Human Resources for Quantum Health.