Our advisory services

Our team of experienced, qualified professionals, including several actuaries, has an in-depth knowledge of group insurance and is able to meet the needs of businesses, by offering a range of high-quality, tailor-made services and customized advice.

A world of possibilities!

Businesses have more flexibility in deciding how their group insurance plan is set up and managed. For larger groups, it is possible to design a custom plan and make special financial arrangements with the insurers.

Our team can give you sound advice on all types of situations:

  • Plan design
  • Plan redesign and alignment
  • Financial arrangements
  • Rate renewal and call for tenders
  • Management of stakeholder relations
  • Employees abroad and foreign employees at home

Plan design

The group insurance plan is a significant asset in recruiting and retaining employees. Therefore, it is important to ensure the plan meets the needs and expectations of insured plan members. These needs can vary substantially depending on group demographics (age and gender distribution) or other factors.

Drawing on experience gained serving more than 1,000 clients, the specialists at AGA Benefit Solutions will consider all these aspects to help you choose and develop the plan that suits you best, among the following:

  • A standard group insurance plan.
  • A modular plan with gold/silver/bronze-type options.
  • A totally flexible group insurance plan including a health management account.

Plan redesign and alignment

We offer full guidance and support at all stages of the redesign process. Plan redesign or alignment typically involves several steps, including:

  • Comparative analysis of existing plans
  • Change impact analysis
  • Updating the plan design
  • Financial simulation
  • Enrollment and administrative support

Financial Arrangements

There are three main types of financial arrangements underpinning group insurance plans, i.e. the traditional insured plan, the insured plan with retention and the self-insured plan.

Traditional insured plan

With this structure, the insurer’s commitment is simple: the premiums are negotiated in advance and remain at a set level for the agreed time period.

Insured plan with retention

This more complex financial arrangement allows the policyholder to participate financially in the group experience. Should the sum of claims paid, administration fees and reserves be less than the total premiums paid during the period, the policyholder may be entitled to part of the surplus, in the form of a rebate. Conversely, any shortfall will be recovered through a premium adjustment charged to the group.

Self-insured plan

In a self-insured plan, the policyholder assumes the financial risk for certain types of coverage, typically medical and dental care, while the life insurance and long-term disability coverage are maintained on an insured or retention basis.

To learn more about self-insurance, click here.

Needs assessment

Our team of professionals will help you understand your financial arrangement options, will conduct financial simulations to illustrate the anticipated results, and will assist you in negotiating with insurers the arrangements that best meet your needs.

Rate renewal and call for tenders

The cost of group insurance plans keeps rising quickly every year. It is therefore important to consult an experienced advisor from AGA, who will help you find the best cost-control solutions.

Managing your group insurance needs is a priority for us. Every year, we perform a thorough analysis of your insurer’s renewal terms and conditions to determine the fair cost and be in a position to negotiate these conditions.

When renewal negotiations do not produce acceptable rates, it may be appropriate to issue a call for tenders from various insurance providers. A professionally conducted call for tenders is required in order to get the most competitive quotes. Our advisors can help you select the right time to issue a call for tenders.

Management of stakeholder relations

Three types of situations are found in unionized work environments:

  • The employer is the sole policyholder.
  • The union is the sole policyholder.
  • Both parties are joint policyholders.

Moreover, financial responsibility for the plan is typically shared by dividing the cost of insurance premiums. To guarantee the smooth operation of these plans, it is essential to set up communication mechanisms to ensure that all stakeholders have a common understanding of the plan’s objectives, financing and long-term management.

In all cases, your AGA Benefit Solutions consultant is an objective, credible resource supporting a sound management process that is transparent to all policy holding parties.

Employees abroad and foreign employees at home

When Canadian employees are sent on foreign assignments for relatively long periods, individual contracts must be set up with specialized insurers to avoid discontinuities in coverage.

The type of protection needed will depend on such factors as the duration of the assignment, the country in which the employee is deployed and the employee’s family situation (whether the family accompanies the employee abroad or remains in Canada).

Similarly, employment of a non-resident in Canada also requires special attention, because your basic group insurance contract typically excludes employees who are not covered by the public health care plan.

Your expert at AGA Benefit Solutions can help you identify your needs and obtain appropriate insurance coverage for all these special cases.

Would you like to test our services?

If you already have a group insurance plan, contact us to get a free and complete diagnostic of your plan’s competitive status.