Human resources departments have faced significant cuts due to the economic downturn. Adding the annual benefits marketing to an overloaded schedule can overwhelm an already lean benefits department.

Marketing every line of coverage every single year is very time-consuming. Carrier competition is key to driving down rate increases, and at MBP Inc., we believe in testing the market every year. As a benefits manager, this can be a time-consuming annual chore on top of your normal workload.

Careful attention to the plan details presents the employer group to the market in the most favorable light and prevents inaccurate quotes and the inefficiencies of rework.


How underwriters use the information

Why is all this information needed? How do underwriters utilize this information to assess the risk of your group? The chart (see "Checklist of minimum requirements," on page 12) provides some insight into how this information is used by underwriters.


Finding something better

The desired outcome of any marketing process is either to confirm that the employer is receiving the most favorable contracts available or to find something better.

Start early. Provide accurate and timely information. Market annually to generate competition for your benefits package.

Contributing Editor Laurie S. Miller is president of Miller, Buettner & Parrot, Inc., an employee benefits consulting firm in Rockford, Ill. The firm consults with over 50 public entities and also has a large corporate practice. She holds an MBA from Northern Illinois University and a BA from Eastern Illinois University. She can be reached at

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