Trends in employee benefits and HR outsourcing bode well for brokers and advisers who are poised to guide their clients through increasingly complicated healthcare and compliance challenges, according to new industry research.

One-third of employers outsourced all of their benefits administration in 2014, which was up 20% from the previous year, notes the Guardian Life Insurance Company of America’s third annual Workplace Benefits Study. In addition, nearly two-thirds of this outsourcing involves multiple vendors compared with 48% in 2013. More than 1,000 benefits decision-makers and 1,706 benefit plan participants were polled in two online surveys conducted in 2014.

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