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How to Understand Your Employee Benefits

Now that you’ve gotten the job offer, it’s time to review the employee benefits. 

If you’re on the hunt for a new job, there’s more to consider than just your responsibilities in your new position. In fact, one of the biggest things to consider when job hunting is your new employer’s benefits packages. 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 74% of civilian workers had access to workplace healthcare benefits.1 In the private sector, 70% had access to healthcare benefits and in the government sector, access to healthcare benefits were available to 89% of workers.2 Because of this, understanding employee benefits is a must—especially when you’re considering a new job offer. 

5 Types of Employee Benefits

1. Health Insurance

For many job seekers, health insurance can make or break a job offer. Many start-ups or smaller companies don’t always offer health benefits. If they do, you’ll probably see PPO (preferred provider organization), HMO (health maintenance organization) plans, or HDHP (high deductible health plans). 

PPO plans are flexible and allow you to see any healthcare provider. In addition, PPO plans do not require you to choose a primary healthcare provider and referrals are not required.3 HMO plans are less expensive but only allow you to see certain providers in your local network. HDHP plans are popular because you have the option to open up a health savings account (HSA). These accounts allow you to pay for medical services with tax-free money. 

2. Retirement Plans 

Thanks to the SECURE Act 2.0, saving for retirement just got a little easier. Companies are more able to offer things like student loan help, retirement benefits, and more. See our recent article on SECURE Act 2.0 to see what changed. 

But when it comes to retirement plans, most companies these days opt for a 401k over a pension plan. The most common benefit you’ll see is a 401k savings option with a company match up to 3%. That means your company will match whatever amount you put into that account up to 3%. It may not sound like a lot, but when it comes to retirement, every little bit counts! 

3. Flexible Spending Accounts 

Flexible spending accounts (FSA) are often associated with high deductible health plans (HDHP). When you have a high deductible health plan, an account like an FSA or HSA (health savings account) can really help offset medical costs. With an FSA or HSA, you determine how much goes into the account from each paycheck through direct deposit. Plus, it’s tax-free earnings which means you’re saving even more from your paychecks to go toward things like: medicine, eyecare, doctor’s appointments, and more. 

4. Paid Time Off

For many employees with traditional employee benefits, PTO is a big deal. American companies usually start employees with two weeks paid vacation and add more PTO benefits the longer you serve the company. Depending on the company, you might also be offered sick leave or personal days as well. 

Lately, the workforce is moving toward an unlimited PTO model where the vacation time isn’t capped but rather on the honor system. 

5. Stock Options

Stock options are a benefit that most start-ups like to offer their employees that join at the ground floor. Usually, these small companies are unable to offer much in the way of benefits, but they can offer stock in the company. As the company becomes more profitable, you do too.

How to Choose The Best Plan

Understanding employee benefits can feel overwhelming at times . . . but it doesn’t have to be. Ask a SageSpring Wealth Partner for help. We can help you understand your options for health insurance, life insurance, stock options, and retirement benefits so you can choose the best plan for you and your family. 

Talk to an advisor today!

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Jeffrey T. Dobyns


President, SageSpring | Financial Advisor, RJFS 

Jeffrey T. Dobyns

President, SageSpring | Financial Advisor, RJFS

Beyond crunching numbers and investment strategies, at SageSpring, we’re about building relationships. When you encounter Founder & President of SageSpring, Jeff Dobyns, it’s easy to understand why this is at the very heart of who we are as a firm. You won’t find stuffy formalities with Jeff; instead, you can expect to find him sharing a warm smile, communicating a compelling vision, or patiently untangling life’s complex challenges with clients. He believes in truly getting to know clients, understanding their aspirations and priorities, and navigating their financial plans with a tailored, comprehensive approach. Our team members have often been caught taking notes on Jeff’s effortless relationship skills from a distance, and we admire them for striving to learn from one of the best. 

Jeff’s financial expertise and wisdom are the perfect match to his innate people skills. Jeff holds the prestigious CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM certification, Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU®), and Chartered Financial Consultant (ChLU®) designations, and has held executive positions with financial planning firms for more than two decades. 

His dedication extends beyond the office to the boardroom and the local community, where Jeff is passionate about giving back. He serves as Chairman of the Board of Men of Valor, a prison ministry and mentoring program. Jeff also serves on the board of Send Musicians to Prison, which shares hope, healing and restoration with the imprisoned through musicians & artists. Jeff actively supports other initiatives in the community by sitting on the board of The Signatry of Middle Tennessee and the Halftime Institute of Nashville. 

Witnessing his four children, Gracyn, Hunter, Tanner, and Logan, excel on the field is almost just as rewarding, if not more, than celebrating the victories of seeing his clients overcome obstacles and build wealth. Spending weekends boating on the lake, hiking mountain trails, and fishing with his family are the moments Jeff cherishes most. It’s this grounded perspective that reveals the true meaning of wealth for Jeff: not just numbers on a page, but the freedom to create experiences that enrich your life and the lives of those you love. When you choose the Dobyns McMillin Wealth Team, you choose more than financial expertise. You choose a partner who champions your dreams, celebrates your victories, and walks besides you on the path to achieving your unique goals.

**Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER TM, CFP® (with plaque design) and CFP® (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board’s initial and ongoing certification requirements.