The ACA’s Impact on Employee Engagement

We have been covering the details of the Affordable Care Act and the different categories employees can fall into, navigating the safe harbor method, and business basics [infographic], for a while now. But what we haven’t explored yet is the impact that the ACA is having and will have on employee engagement.

When an organization decides to be ACA compliant by keeping employees staffed under 30 hours – meaning they are a part-time employee, opposed to a full-time or full-time equivalent employee – they are ensuring they will not have to provide affordable healthcare to these employees. The leadership of this organization most likely made this decision to save the company money, but could it hurt them more in the long run?

An employee working near full-time hours, but who is not receiving affordable health care benefits, is more susceptible to disengagement. Without support from his organization, an employee can feel cheated and begin to lose trust in the company and those who manage him. Beyond the discord this can create between the employee and the organization, the lack of affordable health care can put a strain on the employee’s personal life. He now has to worry about paying higher fees for medical bills and prescriptions for his family. The combination of the personal struggle and loss of faith in his employer results in distraction and disengagement on the job. For the organization, is the cost of lost productivity less or more than the cost of health care for this individual?

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