As 2013 comes to a close, we’re taking a look at some of the most popular stories on our website this year. Here are the top five blog items of 2013:

1. Nondiscrimination rules an elephant in the room

As most employers worry about whether to “pay or play” as of 2014, and whether or not certain employees will need to be counted as full-time for health care reform purposes, there is an elephant in the room that is not yet getting enough notice. This elephant is the approaching nondiscrimination rules that apply to all health plans that are not grandfathered.

2. PPACA: Play or pay? 7 reasons why ‘pay’ is not the easy answer

Some employers assert that the play-or-pay mandate will raise their costs and force them to make workforce cutbacks. As a result, a number are considering eliminating their health care coverage altogether and instead paying the penalty on their full-time employees. While the “pay” option might be worth considering, there are strong reasons why employers should look carefully at all of their options and do their best to calculate the actual outcomes of each.

3. Stop obsessing over wellness ROI

Because of the hard sell on financial performance, we have perpetuated a myopic view of wellness and all that it has to offer. What’s more, we’ve placed unnecessary pressure on wellness to generate results that are largely unrealistic, i.e., deliver immediate financial value.

4. Stress affects work performance of nearly half of employees

Stress has been called the “health epidemic of the 21st century” by the World Health Organization and is estimated to cost American businesses up to $300 billion a year. For managers and benefits professionals to effectively address stress in the workplace, it is important to understand how stress affects employee productivity, and whether it affects men and women differently.

5. Six crucial 401(k) employee education tips

From saving enough to get the company match to diversification and keeping your money in the plan, here are six important lessons to teach your plan members about their 401(k) plan.

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