What are Business Owners Looking for in a Health Plan (Beyond Cost)

Business owners typically look for several key features when choosing a health insurance plan for their employees. Here are some of the most important factors:


For the record, ‘beyond cost’ doesn’t mean cost is a non-factor, it just has to be put in perspective. Many business owners will say that the biggest consideration is the cost of the health benefits plan. They consider the monthly premiums and any out-of-pocket expenses for employees, such as deductibles and co-pays. However, realistically cost is rarely the deciding factor. If that were the case, every business would be on a completely custom self-funded plan designed specifically for their group. As a result, we need to review the other considerations that business owners, CFOs, and HR team members discuss when choosing a plan.


Comprehensive coverage for employees, including preventive care, hospitalization, and prescription drugs, is an extremely important HR subject. Good coverage provides employees and companies with financial protection. It’s also important to note that business owners need to feel confident that their coverage complies with ACA and other requirements.


Business owners want to make sure that the plan they choose has a strong network of providers. The benefit administrators need to be assured that their employees will have access to a large and/or local network. The network needs to provide high-quality care and (almost as important as access and quality) the coordination of care should be smooth and seamless. 


Flexibility is important because business owners may want to choose a health benefits plan that allows them to customize the package offered to their employees. For example, they may want to offer a high-deductible plan with a health savings account (HSA) option or a plan that includes dental and vision coverage. If a business owner is able to understand why something costs as much as it does, then they may be better able to make changes. Some traditional health insurance plans explicitly obscure plan details to make it easier to charge whatever they want. By offering a plan with transparency, a business owner can be flexible to build the plan that suits their needs the best.

Ease of Administration

The final consideration is ease of administration. Business owners want a health insurance plan that is easy to administer and manage, with minimal paperwork and administrative tasks. They want a plan that is easy for them to explain and easy for the employees (members) to understand. This is one of the places where Excel Health Plans shine. Our prepackaged plans are bundled in ways to simplify processes and provide proven solutions.

The next time a business owner is ready to review a plan, make sure to keep these items in mind. You can keep the conversation focused on the concerns that actually matter and not get hung up on the ones that don’t.