Author Archives: CorpStrat News

Disability – It Won’t Happen to Me!

Frustrated Couple With Woman In Wheelchair Reading Insurance Bill

Why Do I Need Disability Insurance?

The answer is quite simple and straightforward. It is far and away from the most important piece of insurance that every working American should own.

So why then is there such an extreme emphasis in this country on other products like medical insurance and life insurance while disability fails in comparison?

Don’t get me wrong, life insurance and healthcare are critical to everyone’s financial protection and should be held in esteem in a sound financial plan – but more so than disability income insurance?  Not a chance.

If you are between the ages of 18 and 70 and earn a regular paycheck, you need at least 65% of your income protected with comprehensive “own occupation” disability insurance.  How else can you afford to pay your bills should you become sick or disabled? When you’re young and healthy imagining a situation where you can’t physically work is really difficult for most people, especially when their pay earning is received automatically. That’s why so many people eventually find themselves in a situation where their income becomes nonexistent with nothing to replace it.

The Importance of Disability Insurance

Most Americans suffer from the delusion that they will not be disabled during their lifetime. Unfortunately, the reality is quite different.  Over a quarter of working Americans will be affected by a short or long term disablement during their career.  Yet, only 31% of those working in the private sector have any form of income protection insurance.

Why do we feel impervious to accidents and to the thousands of medical conditions and diseases that can harm the human body to the point of disability?  Well, that is just human nature to feel impervious.

And that is when most of the problems take shape, in the first two-thirds of our lives.  We don’t save enough of our earned income.  Expanding retirement vehicles have brought promise over the last quarter-century, but Americans still don’t save enough for emergencies let alone retirement.  One-third of us have no retirement savings, and 48% of us don’t save any annual income.  How can we expect to financially survive in this world while supporting our families without any savings or income protection?  We can’t.  People need personal disability insurance.

Personal disability insurance is available to anyone and everyone who works for a living, employers and self-employed professionals included. The question we all need to ask ourselves is…

What would you do if you couldn’t work? How far could you go without a paycheck?”

How to Get Disability Insurance

Ask us about how to protect your most valuable asset, your ability to earn a living, and we’ll help you navigate the complexities of disability insurance in order to provide a safety net for your future.

3 Productivity Drains That HR Automation Tools Can Solve for Your Business

Managing attendance in a HR system

Administering processes manually within your human resources (HR) department can lead you to trouble. They are time-consuming, which doesn’t allow your HR department to automate or time to focus on bigger-picture improvements. On top of that, they can lead to human error, causing mistakes, which can substantially slow down your overall operations.

With cloud-based HR automation tools at your disposal, you can enhance key-processes that will help your business improve culture, boost transparency and reach identified goals.

Increase Your Productivity In These Areas With HR Automation Tools

Essential and strategic HR management processes should be automated with cloud-based systems, platforms, modules or applications. The following can be improved with HR automation tools.

Performance Management

When this process is administered manually, it’s extremely hard to track goals, manage for fair compensation evaluations or even have enough time to truly create an efficient performance management process. HR automation tools can help improve performance evaluations for administrators, managers, and employees by automating numerous workflows, acquiring advanced analytics, sending out templated communications, providing a customized scoring system and more.

When employees feel properly evaluated and compensated, it will only build the employer brand further because you will be doing right for the workforce. Today’s top talent is looking for fair compensation, ample opportunity for growth and great work culture. Improving the performance management process is just one step into making your employer brand a gold standard in your industry.

Benefits Management

Without automating benefits management process, HR administrators and employees go through a painful ritual once or twice per year. With benefits enrollment, messaging is too confusing and time-consuming to relay. You go through meeting-after-meeting, trying to relay benefits facts that employees just seem to not be able to understand. You have to time your communications and manually send them off to “All staff” just to remind them that Open Enrollment is happening and they better make their selections soon.

With HR automation tools to help you administer the benefits management process, you and employees will experience these improvements:

  • Employees can compare, analyze and check plan costs prior to enrollment
  • Employees can print consolidated benefit statements at any time
  • Administrators can configure rules for specified benefit options to appear in employee portals based on set criteria
  • Employee selections are seamlessly sent to appropriate carriers via Electronic Data Interface (EDI) transfer
  • Benefits deductions sent directly to payroll

Employee Self-Service (Portal)

With an employee portal implemented and synced with a few varying modules, you will be able to allow employees to:

  • Manage PTO
  • Clock in and out
  • Review and select their benefits
  • Download and print pay stubs, W-2 and ACA forms
  • Track goals and manage performance
  • Submit expense reports
  • Take surveys
  • Access company documentation and more

HR administrators can configure the features, content available and access based on company priorities and other rules determined. An employee portal allows you to center your focus on more meaningful projects over being an information finder for employees.

It’s Time to Do a Payroll Check-up!

June is IRS Payroll Check-up Month

They say taxes and death are the only certainties in life. While you can’t time the latter, you can time taxes, and doing a payroll check-up is a great way to make sure you don’t have any surprises.

If you are an employer, June is IRS check-up month, a great time to provide tools and help your employees be sure they are on track. By checking their withholding, taxpayers can make sure enough is being taken out of their paychecks or other income to cover the tax owed.

Everyone Should Check Withholdings

The IRS recommends that everyone do a Paycheck Checkup early in 2019. Though especially important for anyone with a 2018 tax bill, it’s also important for anyone whose refund is larger or smaller than expected. By changing withholding now, taxpayers can get the refund they want next year. For those who owe, boosting tax withholding early in 2019 is the best way to head off a tax bill a year from now. In addition, taxpayers should always check their withholding when a major life event occurs or when their income changes.

Doing a Paycheck Checkup now using the IRS Withholding Calculator means taxpayers have the majority of the year to spread out any changes they make to their withholding.

The agency said the average tax refund was $2,729 for the tax year, 2018. While some taxpayers may find it advantageous to get a large tax refund, others may wish to have more of their money in their paychecks throughout the year.

Whatever the goal, the IRS wants taxpayers to know that while taxes must be paid as income is earned during the year, either through withholding or estimated tax payments, they can make adjustments that will influence the size of their refund.

Doing an annual #PaycheckCheckup is a good idea for everyone –  it’s designed for people who receive wages, but the #IRS Withholding Calculator can help recipients of pension and annuity income, too.

The Benefits of Employee Benefits

Your people are the backbone of your organization’s ability to grow and drive revenue. So how important are quality employee benefits to achieving your company’s goals and objectives? They are extremely crucial.

Employees value a well-rounded selection of benefits, and health insurance, a 401(k) plan, life insurance and dental coverage are a few of the plans that you can consider offering.

The Benefits

Benefits packages offer value to your employees and help you boost productivity and retention in a cost-effective manner. Here are a few of the advantages of offering employee benefits as part of your compensation package.

Talent Attraction and Retention

Employees highly value a good benefits package. Developing a strategic benefits package that targets specific types of employees can help attract the right job candidates to keep your organization running at peak efficiency.

Once you have these top-performing employees at your company, providing a tailored employee benefits package will serve as a barrier to them leaving—a great benefits package can be a huge advantage when looking at retention strategies because it holds more than just monetary value for the employee. A bigger salary at another company likely won’t be as strong a pull for an employee tempted to leave if the other company’s benefits package isn’t as attractive as yours.

Healthy, Productive Employees

When your benefits package includes a combination of health insurance and dental and vision coverage, you will have employees who are able to take a proactive role in managing their health. They will have easy, affordable access to health care, reducing absenteeism due to illness.

When they are on the job, healthy employees are more productive than sick ones. It’s beneficial for your company’s productivity and your employees when they have access to medical coverage and time off when they are sick.


A good benefits package leads to satisfied employees with higher morale. Employees who find value in their benefits are typically more willing to commit to their company because it helps make them feel valued—which leads to increased productivity and decreased absenteeism.

Efficient Use of Resources

Offering valuable benefits can help lower top employees’ expectations for salary. Many employees are willing to accept good benefits in lieu of a slightly higher salary.

This is an advantage to your budget because the value you present to employees with benefits, especially health insurance plans, can be monetarily equal to a raise in salary for them, while costing you less due to group rates and lower payroll taxes. Employers can avoid the hidden cost of paying extra payroll taxes on higher salary by instead offering benefits to provide similar value to employees.

Thinking Long-term

Even if you think you can save a little money in the short term by skimping on employee benefits, you will eventually face the consequences through a lowered ability to attract high-achieving employees, increased difficulty retaining your top performers, and lowered morale and productivity.

Offering a quality array of employee benefits will pay off through a stronger, more productive workforce with employees committed to your company.

Wrap Them up – Before Your Competition Does

Tom Peters, a best-selling author of many books on management, stated the following.
“Some employees are worth a lot of money…. some employees are worth a hell of a lot more money.”

Don’t think for a minute that your competitors don’t know who your best people are; they do. They also, by default, know who the “not so good” employees are. Every business remains vulnerable.

[To read more from CorpStrat’s Martin Levy’s article click here]

What happens in a thriving economy is the best employees to become highly sought after. They often pay no attention to how the economy is doing in general, but in a great economy, they know that they will have more opportunities. These are opportunities they do not have to seek out. What does it take to keep the best? It takes recognition, rewards, strategy, and commitment.

It’s an Employee Market

2019 marks the lowest unemployment rate in U.S. history. Those employed are valuable assets: those unemployed may be functionally unemployable – or simply not skilled and/or not trainable for various reasons. You have to retain to be successful.

Don’t Wait!

As a leader, you must be proactive because if you hesitate, or delay implementing or improving the size, shape and value of any “Golden Handcuffs” you are offering, your better employees won’t wait while you figure it out.

Golden Handcuffs

“Take away my factories, my plants; take away my railroads, my ships, my transportation; take away my money; strip me of all of these but leave me my men and in two or three years, I will have them all again.”  — Andrew Carnegie


A ‘Golden Handcuff’ is a way to describe a specific plan that addresses an annually funded tool to retain and reward a Key (or class of) Key employee(s) – but restricts their access over time.

In general, a Golden Handcuff is a selective executive accumulation plan offers customized to selected key corporate executives…a benefit over and above those provided to all employees by a qualified retirement plan or any other employee benefit plan.

This is typically a non-qualified arrangement (non-ERISA) between a corporation/entity and selected set of key executives in which the entity promises to pay the executive a specified benefit at a specified period of time, generally annually, with a restriction on the employees’ access to or vested interest in the accumulated asset. Most plans also have a survivor benefit to the executive’s family.

Get to work retaining and rewarding your top performers – before your competition does.