Brokers, agents and advisers are missing from the flurry of changes made by our legislators around health reform. Somehow, this group is not endorsed or even mentioned in many communications. Although we have a strong voice, we need to couple that strength with the right strategic professional partnerships.

I believe advisers need to partner with other associations that health insurance impacts. SHRM, the Society for Human Resource Management, is the association for HR professionals and would be a strong partner in bringing both advisers and HR professionals’ needs to legislators’ attention. The FPA, or Financial Planning Association, is another group impacted by federal legislative decisions. If we use the synergies we have with broader benefits associations, our voice would be so loud it would have to be heard.

This will strengthen the position of the adviser with the Feds and help other associations understand the true value of what advisers can bring to the table. Too many times we make assumptions that everyone understands the work we do behind the scenes to ensure that a company’s benefits structure and offerings are in good standing. When, in fact, there is a real need for legislators, partners and others to truly understand the advising that advisers do.

Zulic is an EBA Advisory Board member and director of human resources at Efficient Edge HR, Recruitment and Insurance Services in San Diego, Calif. She can be reached at 


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