In today’s environment of escalating costs for health insurance and other employee benefits, many companies are looking for ways to slash their benefit offerings. But in Huntsville, Ala., there’s one company that’s doing the exact opposite.
IronMountain Solutions is a systems, software and hardware solutions engineering company that supplies services to the U.S. government and Department of Defense on a contract basis. In Huntsville, engineers are in high demand, so the company has always strived to hire and hold onto the best engineers by offering a best-in-class employee benefits plan.
“Our goal is to treat our employees better than our competitors treat their employees,” says IronMountain Solutions’ CFO Brian House. “We’re always cognizant that our employees can easily be recruited away if we don’t maintain a competitive edge benefits-wise.”
Competing with the Big Boys
But as a small business with around 100 employees, it can be difficult for IronMountain Solutions to compete with larger corporations when it comes to their employee benefits. “While we can’t compete directly with corporations employing hundreds of employees, we work hard to structure a benefits package that comes close to theirs,” says House.
Cadence Insurance has played a key role in helping IronMountain Solutions create an outstanding employee benefits package that has helped position the company as the employer of choice in Huntsville. Cadence Insurance Senior Vice President Todd Fredella explains some of the unique challenges IronMountain Solutions faces with their employee benefits.
“Forty percent of their employees receive health insurance through a health care program for military service members and their families so they don’t need group health insurance through the company,” says Fredella. “Among employees who do need health insurance, many are well compensated and could benefit from some tax breaks.”
The solution Cadence Insurance came up with was to offer employees that need health insurance a high-deductible health plan with a health savings account (HSA) that enables them to pay health insurance costs with pre-tax dollars. This option has reduced the company’s health insurance costs by 21 percent, which the company is putting back into employees’ pockets by contributing it to their HSAs.
House says that Fredella and his team spent a lot of time explaining the tax benefits of this arrangement to IronMountain Solutions’ employees so they understood why it’s a better solution. “Cadence Insurance is a great resource we can turn to whenever we have questions or need help in any way,” he says.
Dental and Disability Insurance Challenges
Another challenge IronMountain Solutions faced was soaring costs for dental insurance. “We challenged Cadence Insurance to find a dental insurance plan with more benefits for our employees, but still affordable,” says House. “They really came through — they found a plan that offers even better coverage than we had before, at a more affordable cost.”
Disability insurance, which IronMountain Solutions offers its employees at no cost, was yet another employee benefits challenge they faced. The company has experienced rapid growth, with the number of employees rising from 18 to 106 in the past five years, including many well compensated employees.
“As a result, our salary structure changed drastically and our disability coverage wasn’t anywhere near the percentage it needed to be,” explains House. He says that Cadence Insurance found a disability insurance provider who understood this challenge and was able to provide short- and long-term disability insurance at adequate coverage levels.
Icing on the Cake
The icing on the employee benefits cake, though, might be the group auto and homeowners insurance deals Cadence Insurance was able to obtain for IronMountain Solutions’ employees who want to purchase coverage. Fredella says this type of benefit is usually only available to large corporations with 1,000 or more employees. “An employee recently told me he couldn’t believe how much money he was saving on his auto and homeowners insurance through the program,” says House.
House calls Fredella “an insurance geek — but in a good way. I work around engineers all day long, so it’s great to work with someone who understands insurance and employee benefits inside-out, and who’s extremely responsive to our needs.”
Fredella credits IronMountain’s management team and their employees for the company’s continued success. “We had a very rigorous planning process to build a long-term strategy in which Brian challenged us to bring a new idea for implementation every year. That’s an ambitious goal, but it explains why IronMountain was recognized as an Inc. 5000 company based on its 462 percent revenue growth over the past three years. We like their focus.”
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Cadence Insurance, a full-service insurance agency, will work with you to create an employee benefits package that meets the needs of your business and your workforce. We offer a full range of insurance options for you and your employees to choose from. Contact us to learn more.
This article is provided as a free service to you and is for general informational purposes only. Cadence Bank makes no representations or warranties as to the accuracy, completeness or timeliness of the content in the article. The article is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice and should not be relied upon for such purposes.