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comment by b_b
b_b  ·  112 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: Pubski: August 16, 2023

Real milestone yesterday, as my company had its first employee start. It's a big investment for me, but one I think will pay off. I feel good about it. She was already giving suggestions on improving the assays I'm running. New experience for me navigating all of the legal and administrative side of things...which agencies to register with, how to do payroll, where the hell to buy health insurance. If I can raise more money, I'm definitely making an administrative assistant my next hire!

kleinbl00  ·  112 days ago  ·  link  ·  

We've been dealing with a bunch of bullshit related to this lately. The pandemic literally bumped us from 3 employees to like nine (not including contractors) and we used this thing called ClockTree that was mostly "zoom for psychologists" but it also had a marvelous HR module built in for free.

Unfortunately Clocktree shut down yesterday so every payroll form, tax form, health department form etc needs a new home. After much digging the smart money seems to be "use Asana" but I hated Asana in beta, used Asana while hating it for like two years, and bought the whole company Ora because it's basically Asana you can use (that bills you from Bulgaria which always puckers my bank's asshole).

If you can find a broker you like they can hook you up with insurance. They're likely not going to be able to do much with... two. Costco has pretty good prices for employer health plans but not a lot of versatility but at your stage in the game I don't think you'll beat them.

b_b  ·  112 days ago  ·  link  ·  

Costco, eh? Never would have crossed my mind. I'll check it out.

I also suggested to her that she look on the exchange and see if it's competitive. If so, I'd cover the cost via higher pay. Bad idea?

kleinbl00  ·  112 days ago  ·  link  ·  

You will get a bored person who will send you boring spreadsheets.

So here's the thing about the exchange.

1) there are probably pretty rippin' subsidies available.

2) If you offer any kind of insurance plan, those subsidies are right out. For the entire company.

3) "covering the cost via higher pay" had best not be written down anywhere or it is cut-and-dried insurance fraud.

I've been trying to make health insurance make sense for my employees for going on three years now. Their income levels, their hours worked and their available subsidies have meant that my cost for not boning my poorest employees is $50k a year to me... and chances have been excellent that my richest employees would turn down my insurance anyway because they're getting it for free through their spouses. So here I am, over a million dollars in revenue a year, buying insurance for a family of 3 off the exchange and waiting 4 months for an appointment to get my blood pressure meds re-upped.

It's a deeply fucked up system. There's effectively no incentive for providing employer health insurance for any company under a bajillion people. We had dinner with friends on Saturday; she's the head of benefits for a cruise line and she can do things like "hey Primera our plan now covers this" and they go "yes'm". It neither helps nor hurts that her counterpart at Primera used to be her direct report when she was at Primera because when you have 50,000 employees across 24 time zones you have leverage.

But if you've got nine employees? Having one of them opt out changes rates for the entire company. And uhhh when every.single.one.of.them is a woman of childbearing age...

...hold onto your butts.