Part 1: Select and profile an organization for the benefit

The Metropolitan Chicago Health Council: Organization profile

Hospitals are involved in the provision of necessary services to the community; giving care, healing and providing comfort to the patient (Mchc). The Metropolitan Chicago Health Council has been involved in the provision these services as well as others. The MCHC has been involved in assisting hospitals through issuing quality care services. MCHC corporate hospitals are able to provide $23 billion care to 600,000 patients. The services provided vary from value-added services to educational services to governmental advocacy; the MCHC are simply taking care of hospitals that take care of the community.

The membership fees are constantly flat over a period of time. This displays the commitment that MCHC has in the community at large. The money saved can hence be used in other fee-related programs offered by MCHC. The membership to it is hence kept at a low, allowing the health care organizations the ability to decide on the programs and services valued by the organization. With this price control as well as other factors, the MCHC is able to maintain its standard of quality service provision.

Employee Benefits Plan

The MCHC handles a wide range of hospital human resources section requirements through the human resources services. Several departments in this organization have existed for quite a long time. The benefits that the employees accrue involve an indirect compensation designed to improve the quality of work as well as the personal lives of the employees. The benefits for the employees are around 43% of the total salary they get. The identification of an employee’s benefits control varies from one organization to another; there are varied forms of necessary activities (JOHN H. JACKSON, 2007). The operation of a benefits program is expensive as well as time taking. Taking an instance of an organization with thirty to forty employees, the keen observance on the use of benefits or otherwise the change of benefit. The person in charge of the benefits program should be able to operate within a wide range of areas. Employers require that the employees be in a position to uphold the organization and create benefits. The benefits are able to create an importance to the employers as well as the employees, what motivates them is the design of the program and how it is communicated. Key among them; Benefits plan design, benefits plan delivery, benefits policy formulation, communications, cost management and resources controls, monitoring the external environment and management reporting among others.

The main task of the employee benefits administration is the design at the start and the continued transformation of the benefits program. This transformation on the benefits program is meant to meet the ever changing market environment, new regulatory needs or the changing of the organization or human resources aims. These design operations however are not without their disadvantages; one has to keep in mind its cost, how the fore development of the program impacts the benefits design and the culture of the organization, the trends and market competition operations in addition to the market conditions that related to the design process. The bargaining agreement and the benefit design changes that are negotiated by the organization also play a role. In the event these agreements do not materialize most managerial teams attempt to create cohesion with their employees that rotate around the transformation of the benefit plan.

The benefits design involves the creation of structural choices at the highest level as well as at the low level. With the application of a non-contribute or contribute as its key retirement program may result to varied forms of outcomes ranging from financial, human resources and the management of risks (George Bohlander, 2009). The benefits plan means the organization is more reliant on the pension formula and maintains the risk accrued from investing plan.

Requirements for a Sound Benefits Program

The most successful plan design is acquired when the benefits program is able to handle effectively the requirements of the organization and efficiently performed and passing on of the information to the employees. The design effort hence begins with deeply knowing the organization’s compensation and benefits program as well as the specific aims the benefits plan is aimed at addressing (Pynes, 2008). The changes done to a benefit plan are continuous with reference to the changing market as previously stated. A good plan lays into consideration the short term, intermediate as well as long term factors.

The efficiency of a benefit program is more so reliant upon two factors; the selection of the benefits that focus more on the needs of the employees while similarly enhancing strategic organizational desires or aims(Rosenbloom, 2005). Another factor is the effective and efficient management of the benefits programs. It was prominent in the past times when the employer would issue a benefit on the thought that it is good. This idea has been passed with time with presently specialists recommending the addressing specific key areas.

Wells Fargo Bank, Cabrini College and are instances of interactive benefit systems. The internet has made it possible for internet to be accessed through their benefits package.

Part 2: Statement of the issue

Benefits products are issued via the Combined Insurance Companies. Worksite Solutions are able to issue a custom benefit package which is reliant upon the skills of each person. Each and every employee is issued with a custom benefit statement that is composed of the company benefits together with the salary, displaying their real compensation. An hour in a week is the optimum number an employee is able to work for the voluntary benefits.

The internet is quite advantageous in the sense that employees are able to acquire information in reference to their own timetable. In relation to human resource benefits program as well as the benefits of health care, the internet enables the placement of information in the areas needed most. The employees want to follow their claim, reassess their present coverage levels and finally followed by the comparison of their choices. They aim to take control of their health plan (Issel, 2009).The online benefits programs are able to establish a form that rely on self-service benefits management. One of the objectives of the online programs is the provision of a better flexibility when choosing the benefits. A key advantage of the interactive online system is it’s relatively cheapness in management. When an online system is placed into its operational status, it is able to easily and cheaply get adapted to the employer and the employee desires. With the continued use of the online system, it becomes necessary to take keen consideration on the security when transmitting information.

It is a possible that no other section of the human resource is advanced technologically in comparison to the administration of the employee benefits programs. The software that are used are useful in making benefits administration operational in sections like the pension, variable pay, health benefits and time off programs. Adverts on the wide range of benefit programs are available on human resource journals like Workforce Management and HR Magazine. The software programs are cheap and easy to manage the benefits programs in cases where the employers do not have the resources or expertise to control these programs.

Part 3: Literature Review

In results from certain studies, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers in 2007, students listed “good benefits packages” as their most desirable as opposed to salary or an advancement opportunity. An employee’s benefits are among the most difficult in the business world as at present in the daily task of attracting as well as maintaining employees. With the continued challenging tasks, working conditions and fair wages continue to play a role in the attraction and maintenance of an employee; it brings forth the importance of a benefits program to employers that continue to attract employees. The US Chamber of Commerce states that employees are quite conversant with the type of benefit program that they accrue from the organization and what other organizations are offering. Moreover, a bigger number of the benefits are provided by the employer thus he subsequently acquires an important cost and employment benefit (Slocum, 2009). Almost all of the employers provide a wide range of benefits to cover the wages paid to the employee. The benefits add onto their compensation as a whole.

The Metropolitan Chicago Health Council is a good example of such an organization that offers its employees the benefits program. It was started in 1935 and is located in Chicago, Illinois with the main task of helping hospitals to provide the best quality of care. It is the third largest in the United States of America. It is indirectly able to meet the needs of several people in the community as well as the employees who are the main players in this organization.

Part 4: Issue Analysis

Decision Issue

We are first supposed to determine the decision issue or the problem that one desires to assess in the cost benefit analysis.  The issue should be one that is important and has a relation to competitive advantage but similarly illustrates a difference between the present and desired situation. It is best stated as a question. An example of a decision issue of consideration can be compensation process or cost consideration.

Relevant Stakeholders

These are the people who have developed a care for it and are likely to be affected by the result of the human resource benefit plan; supervisors, employees and customers as well as suppliers. This is correlated to who is eligible for the program, more so the community. The health benefits program is useful to several people; the patients are the main beneficiaries with, drug costs and medical supplies.

The costs of the program can be used when planning so as to estimate the program expenses. The analysis of the cost is quite vital for monitoring and understanding the process. The information that is gotten can be used for program staff and stakeholders to understand so as to enhance the decision making of the program’s future.

In the planning, reviewing the cost could be helpful in assisting the program planners which interventions are to be implemented. After implementation, the cost effectiveness analysis is done with a program evaluator.

Part 5: Issue Solutions

Cost description

The consideration being placed for the benefits program should include a cost description, where only the program is taken into consideration and not its impact on the program. It is quite simple as it is a direct form of delivery in the issuing of the health program discussed above. Programmers prepare cost description following different categories or line items. This is a process monitoring in relation to accountability.

Costs Analysis

This is the breakdown of all the total expenses using an analytic aspect like time periods, staff activities or funding. It is quite important in the process monitoring. It assesses the costs by either an organizational plan or the service plan. It also focuses on costs or savings that arises from the program.

Cost minimization

It is the most effective to provide at the cheapest cost, it is part of budgeting process that allows program managers to choose the cheapest expense for a certain categories or to a contrasting shop for expenses like supplies and capital facilities.

Part 6: Solution and its Implementation

Implementing benefit programs may often prove to be costly. Cost minimization is therefore important in order to implement the program with the least expenses possible. In cost minimization what is preferred is the least expensive option Haycox (2009). In regard to the provision of health benefit programs, expenses can be reduced through various ways. Internet plays a vital role in cost minimization. As noted earlier, internet enables employees to acquire information in reference to their own timetable. Thus, through the internet, the employees can be able to reassess their present coverage levels, follow their claim and compare their choices. These, minimize costs as it virtually eliminates the physical travel to the benefit provider (s) agencies. In addition, it reduces the paperwork involved on the part of the benefit providers eventually reducing costs. Issel (2009) also notes through internet, employees have greater control of their health plans. Putting into operation of the system is equally cheap because the software is relatively cheap to purchase and once installed cheaper to maintain. As observed, online system minimizes cost while at the same time beneficial to both the employers and the employees. However, online system faces the challenge of security when transmitting the information. The program planners should therefore ensure that the employees’ and customers’ data are secured. Benefit Eligibility Review is a benefit program cost minimization strategy as well Anaheim (2000). It employs multiple phases that asses the employees’ eligibility with the aim of curbing the costs of healthcare and reduce cost of benefit plan without compromising benefits. It assesses eligibility of primary enrollees, accurate enrollment with benefit providers, payroll contributions and deductions accuracy and hidden cost, in that order. This system faces the challenge of being tedious and may be time consuming as well.

Part 7: Justification

The cost of healthcare is rising at an alarming rate and the operation of benefits program is increasingly becoming time consuming and expensive. These increasing costs are often passed over to employees or the customers of these services. Therefore, there is need to minimize costs, and in this case the benefit administration costs. While doing this, it is vital to bear in mind that the cost minimization strategies should meet the new regulatory needs and the changing environment of the market. The internet or the online system and Benefit Eligibility Review strategies are important to cost minimization. One of the factors of the efficiency in benefit programs is the effective and efficient benefits program management Rosenbloom (2005). Online system achieves this threshold since it ensures that the employees have control over their benefit programs. The employers and benefit plans administrators have reduced workloads in maintaining employees’ information, hence enabling them to focus more on formulating benefits that meets employees’ needs. Online interactive benefit systems have success stories as observed in the examples of Cabrini College, Wells Fargo Bank and Benefits Eligibility Review is also critical in cost minimization. As mentioned earlier, it helps agencies minimize costs of benefit plans in addition to generally curb the increasing costs of healthcare. Apart from that, it ensures that the integrity of employee benefit is maintained since this solution ensures there are highly structured way of payroll deductions and a way of reviewing enrollments of health benefit plan (Anaheim, 2011). Despite being tedious and time consuming, the multiple phases involved in this solution ensure accuracy in all benefit management aspects.  It can be concluded from the discussion that, if applied, these solutions can go a long way in minimizing benefit plans cost.

Part 8: Reflection

The project critically analyses the Benefit Plan Design. It is modeled around the profile of the Metropolitan Chicago Health Council (MCHC). MCHC engages in governmental advocacy, educational services and provision of value added services. Through its human resources services, MCHC handles the employees’ benefit plan. The project acknowledges the costly nature of benefits program operation. It further recognizes the need for benefit programs to meet new regulatory requirements and changing market needs. Benefits design requires development of structural choices at all levels. Inclusion of contribute or non- contribute in its retirement program brings forth some implications such as risk, human, and financial resources management (Bohlander, 2009). The project highlights what a sound Benefit Program entails; effective and efficient benefit program management and selection of employees’ need focused benefits Rosenbloom (2005). There should be involvement of relevant stakeholders such as customers, supervisors and employees. Since cost is a critical issue in benefit program, various solutions regarding it has been provided and they are; cost analysis, cost description and cost minimization. Of the three, cost minimization was chosen as the appropriate solution. The other two are equally good solutions but cost minimization ensures maximum benefits are accrued to both the employer and employee in the long term. Through the project, the issues of benefits program have become clearer and I have acquired deep understanding on the subject.

In conclusion, projects like this are essential in developing professional understanding and competency. Such a project demands that a student delves deeper on the subject at hand and read wider on various issues relating to the subject. In addition, the student may be required to undertake more inquire through fieldwork and consulting individuals with relevant knowledge. In the process, therefore, the professional understanding and competency is highly enhanced.



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Haycox, A. (2009) What is Cost Minimization Analysis?

Issel, L. M. (2009). Health program planning and evaluation: a practical and systematic

approach. Mississauga Ontario Canada: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

JOHN H. JACKSON, R. L. (2007). Human Resource Management. Mason, USA:

Cengage Learning.

MCHC,. (n.d.). Metropolitan Chicago Healthcare Council. In Organizational Profile. Chicago


Pynes, J. E. (2008). Human Resources Management for Public and Nonprofit Organizations: A

Strategic Approach. John Wiley and Sons.

Rosen bloom, J. S. (2005). The handbook of employee benefits: design, funding, and

administration. US: McGraw-Hill Professional.

Slocum, H. &. (2009). Organizational Behavior. Mason, USA: Cengage Learning.


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