As health care reform continues to unfold, employers are re-examining the role of their benefit programs in their overall human capital strategy and coming around to the idea that attracting, retaining and engaging workers hinges on the total employee experience, not health care benefits alone.

Here’s what plan sponsors can expect in the coming year:

Health care

2015 is poised to become the year of the Cadillac tax as employers look to further rein in their health care spending before the tax goes into effect in 2018.

Retirement

2015 will usher in an organic shift among employers toward devoting more mind share to retirement programs.

Wellness

2015 could prove to be a trying year for employer-sponsored wellness programs, with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filing suit in recent months against at least three employers — the largest one being Honeywell — over their wellness programs.

Voluntary benefits

Voluntary benefits have experienced significant growth in recent years, a trend that brokers and carriers are hoping continues in 2015.

Attraction and retention

With hiring and turnover levels on the rise, employers are now experiencing challenges with both attracting and retaining employees, especially top performers and high-potential employees.

State of the benefits industry: A story by the numbers

EBN’s annual Benefits Barometer looks at the state of the benefits industry through data from a variety of sources, including the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Kaiser Family Foundation, the Pharmacy Benefit Management Institute and the Plan Sponsor Council of America.

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