The Canadian construction industry is no picnic. The summers are hot and the winters are cold and long with no consideration of the amount of construction we like to do in this fair country. There is no arguing that the construction industry earns their pay so why aren’t their employee benefit plans better accommodating their needs?
The Problem Their Employee Benefit Plans
A standard benefit plan doesn’t work for the Canadian construction industry because it’s at the mercy of the change in seasons and the availability of work contracts. Some of the issues with current construction industry benefit plans are:
- Employers have to pay during the winter season and during low work times
- Traditional benefit plans don’t consider the needs of the construction industry
- A construction company should never have the same plan as an accounting firm (yet I’ve personally seen this many times)
- When the company isn’t making money, the company still pays for benefits
Furthermore, if it’s a 50/50 cost share for your employee benefit plan package, it’s the employer’s responsibility to track down the employee during the winter to get them to pay their share of the premiums. If those employees don’t come back in the springtime, you are footing the bill for his or her health benefits with zero ROI.
Fortunately, there is an option that addresses all these issues and even provides a few additional incentives that work in favour of the employer’s best interests.
Construction Industry Benefit Plans That Make Use Of Every Hour
The amount of money you pay for premiums each month is based on the number of hours an employee works. There is a minimum amount of hours required to pay the insurance company and that is generally 150 hours.
With proper employee benefit plans for the construction industry, an employee can bank every hour worked above 150 to use for months where there is a lack of work or a seasonal lay off. By taking hours from the bank to make up the 150-hour requirement, the worker continues to get coverage with these types of employee benefit plans.
Common Misconception: Sometimes I hear that these plans are only available through unions and that is simply not true