HACC’s Healthcare Hack
Several years ago with the assistance of Conrad Siegel, HACC selected a new insurance carrier for their healthcare benefits. From a financial standpoint, this change in carriers was good for the College; however, over time employees found the new carrier to be far more restrictive in their underwriting and claims approval process. This caused a number of issues and dissatisfaction with employees. With the contract coming up for renewal, HACC again engaged the services of Conrad Siegel to conduct a request for proposal (RFP) process to evaluate the current carrier and potential alternatives both in terms of service and cost.
In looking at alternatives, HACC was specifically concerned with:
- Offering a plan that would appeal to a diverse workforce of classified, administrative/professional, and faculty employees.
- Providing good customer service related to the claims authorization and approval process.
- Offering competitive rates with provisions that would also provide rate stability over the contract period.
- Features/services to help control costs and provide accessible, affordable, and appropriate care.
Conrad Siegel worked with HACC’s Office of Human Resources and the College Compensation Advisory Committee (CCAC) along with the Procurement & Contracts Department to develop and execute an RFP process for the purpose of selecting an insurance carrier to provide healthcare benefits over a multi-year contract period. This process included the development and distribution of the RFP, plan design considerations, review and evaluation of proposals submitted, summary and communication of results, interviews with finalists, and negotiation of rates, plan design, and contract provisions with the selected carrier.
Effective January 1, 2016, HACC began offering a new plan design with a new carrier. Given the strategic importance of managing the College’s resources, this was a very high profile project. Conrad Siegel went above and beyond to partner with HACC to be sure they were able to help achieve their desired outcomes.
“Since the beginning of our plan year (and new contract), we have not had a single complaint from our workforce,” commented Aimee Brough, SPHR, Chief Human Resources Officer. “We believe this is a result of the numerous open sessions we held for employees.” It was particularly helpful to have Vicki Alfieri involved in these employee meetings. “Vicki was able to handle even the most technical issues in very practical and understandable terms,” said Aimee, “even issues the carrier’s representatives were unable to address.”
Working with Conrad Siegel
“The illustrations prepared by Vicki Alfieri and Jim Pyne were just fabulous,” stated Aimee Brough. “They took some very complex issues, for those of us on the CCAC who are not healthcare experts, and explained them in clear and concise terms.” Conrad Siegel worked with the CCAC members to help them understand their options and ultimately make a very good decision. “The expertise that Vicki and Jim brought to the negotiating process was crucial,” said Aimee. “Vicki is a tough negotiator. She was able to secure a number of important concessions from the carrier important to HACC. We knew,” said Aimee, “she was always looking out for our best interests.”
Summarizing the Relationship
When asked to describe the attributes that most defined the relationship between HACC and Conrad Siegel, Amy Berrier, Director of Classification, Compensation Benefits and HRIS, was quick to respond “peace of mind.” “We know,” said Amy, “we can feel safe that our plan is in compliance. We have a high comfort level that nothing is being missed and that Conrad Siegel will be proactive in regard to plan design consulting and changes in regulation.” But perhaps most important commented Aimee Brough, “We know they care about us and our interests.”