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Overcoming the Challenges of a Growing Business

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, about 95% of all American companies are small businesses – those with fewer than 50 employees. Many of these companies have a plan to grow. However, as sales begin to increase, it's common to have some growing pains. Connecting with a business ally that offers the right resources can help your company overcome these hurdles.

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According to Inc., growing companies often face the following challenges:

  1. Cash flow management. The adage "you have to spend money to make money" can get out of hand quickly. A growing company may need to invest in product development, materials, equipment, and additional staff, to support sales that haven't yet paid off. It's a balancing act that can leave you in a tenuous financial position if you're not careful.
  2. Competition. Others will see opportunity in your success. When others begin offering the same products or services, you may suddenly find yourself losing business as you struggle to define the unique value you offer to customers.
  3. Company culture. As your workforce grows – especially if you add middle managers that separate workers from the top – it may be more difficult to control your company culture. This can lead to higher rates of disengagement at a time when you need every employee to be performing at their best.
  4. Delegation. Owners of small businesses are likely accustomed to being involved in every business decision. But as your company grows, this becomes unsustainable. Owners need to learn when to delegate and when to get involved.
  5. Market changes. For many industries, change is a constant. Agility is an important trait for any growing business.
  6. Changing strategies. Not all new products and services may do as well as you expect. Failures are an important part of growing your business. You need to be able to recognize when to abandon a strategy and learn from your mistakes.

Support for growing businesses

Allstate Benefits understands that your needs change as your company grows. The Self-Funded Program through Allstate Benefits offers flexible options and terms that are specially designed for growing businesses.

Building your team and maintaining a positive company culture

Our self-funded options, combined with our industry-leading cost-containment programs, help you offer quality health coverage to your employees without breaking the bank. The ability to offer great health benefits helps you attract and retain the best talent and improves employee morale and engagement, which are vital to your company's success.

Better cash flow management

With the Self-Funded Program, mid-sized companies – those with 51 to 500 employees – can choose stop-loss and contract options that help you better manage your cash flow. Mid-sized businesses can choose:

  • Level funding. You make one predictable payment into your claims account every month. You have no surprises. Your claims expenses are the same every month.
  • Traditional funding. You pay health care claims as they are incurred. Money stays in your pocket until it's needed.

Stop-loss insurance is a type of coverage that protects companies from catastrophic or unexpected amounts of medical claims. This protection is a critical safety net for employers with self-funded health plans. Stop-loss coverage is included in the Self-Funded Program through Allstate Benefits. Options for mid-sized businesses include:

  • Specific-only1. Provides protection against a large health insurance claim incurred by a single member. When a member's medical claims exceed a specific level, stop-loss coverage kicks in to cover the amount in excess of the specific limit.
  • Specific/aggregate. Both traditional and level-funded specific/aggregate options are available. This stop-loss coverage provides protection against both large claims incurred by a single member and claims that exceed the aggregate limit for your entire group.
  • Aggregate-only2. This provides a ceiling on the claims amount you would pay during a contract period for the entire group population. If total claims exceed the aggregate limit, the stop-loss coverage kicks in to cover the rest.

Mid-sized groups can choose a variety of stop-loss contract periods3.

  • 12/12 stop-loss contracts provide coverage for claims incurred and paid during the policy period. This option is available to mid-sized groups with reference-based pricing and PPO plan designs. With this contract option, employers have the option to elect Terminal Liability Coverage4, which protects your budget from medical claims received after your plan's contract period ends. When you renew, you get a 24/12 policy to ensure there are no gaps in your coverage.
  • 12/18 contracts include a six-month run-out period and is available with our PPO and network-only plan designs.
  • 24/12 contracts include a 12-month run-in period and is available with our reference-based pricing and PPO plan designs.
  • 12/21 contracts include a nine-month run-out period and is available with our reference-based pricing plan designs. Additional contract periods may be available to fit your company's needs.

Delegation of plan management

The Self-Funded Program also includes easy, stress-free administration that allows you to delegate plan management to experienced professionals. Plan administration includes:

  • Management of claims payments.
  • Member customer service.
  • Reporting that helps you determine how your members use your plan, so you can better manage costs.

Contact a sales representative to learn more about how the Self-Funded Program can help your business as it grows.

1Available for mid-sized groups that choose Traditional Funding.
2Available for groups with 50 or fewer employees in the following states: Maryland, New Jersey, and West Virginia. Available in Maine for groups of 11 or more employees.
3Traditional Funding, 12/12 and run-in contracts are not available in WA.
4Terminal Liability Coverage does not apply in cases of early termination. Fees may apply. Please refer to the plan proposal for details.

The Self-Funded Program through Allstate Benefits provides tools for employers owning small to mid-sized businesses to establish a self-funded health benefit plan for their employees. The benefit plan is established by the employer and is not an insurance product. Allstate Benefits is a marketing name for: Integon National Insurance Company in CT, NY and VT; Integon Indemnity Corporation in FL; and National Health Insurance Company in CO, WA and all other states where offered. For employers in the Allstate Benefits Self-Funded Program, stop loss insurance is underwritten by these insurance companies in the noted states.

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