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Although approaching the process from different ends of the spectrum, brokers, employers and end consumers faced increased expectations for their respective roles in employee benefit plans this year. This, coupled with evolutions in technology, 401(k) and voluntary product design, made 2015 anything but static.
1) Changing titles
During 2015 and especially in the fourth quarter, brokers shifted away from being benefit consultants to being compliance consultants, says Jeff Fallick, managing principal of Digital Benefit Advisors, Northern California in Los Altos. With the ACA reporting deadline looming, there was a major push to ensure our clients had the appropriate solutions in place for their tracking and reporting needs, he says. With the fines becoming quite severe in 2017, it is incumbent upon us to accurately vet the best of breed vendors for our clients. And, there are plenty of options available.