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Industry Reports Now Available!

David-P-Lind-Benchmark-2012New and exciting additions to our website continue. With the Lindex scores now published, we also have five new industry reports available for purchase and download!

The 14th annual Iowa Employer Benefits Study© allowed us to generate five industry reports from the following sectors:

  1. Manufacturing
  2. Retail
  3. Finance, Insurance, and Real Estate
  4. Healthcare and Social Services
  5. Government and Education

As you might imagine, each industry sector offers benefits that will differ from one another. For example, 70 percent of Retail employers reported offering health insurance, while a larger percentage of the other four industry sectors offer health coverage: Finance/Insurance – 84 percent; Government /Education – 97 percent; Healthcare/Social Services – 80 percent; and Manufacturing – 80 percent.

So what was the average increase in health insurance premiums reported by each sector? The overall average in Iowa (regardless of employer size and industry) was seven percent. Again, this number varies with each sector:

  • Manufacturing – Up 7.0 percent
  • Retail – Up 8.9 percent
  • Finance, Insurance, and Real Estate – Up 7.9 percent
  • Healthcare and Social Services – Up 7.6 percent
  • Government and Education – Up 5.4 percent

The 2012 Study is the very first time that we’ve developed separate industry reports. With 1,206 survey respondents in 2012, we are able to establish enough data from each sector to provide a good statistical report on the benefits offered within these key Iowa sectors.

The benefits offered by employers will vary due to a number of reasons:

  • Size – Larger employers offer more comprehensive benefits than their smaller counterparts.
  • Location – Rural employers tend to offer fewer benefits than Urban/Metro-based employers.
  • Industry – There are factors inherent in each industry that will affect the type and likelihood of certain benefits being offered to employees. One example: Bargained benefits. Public organizations typically have organized labor who will bargain for specific benefits. To a lesser extent, Manufacturing will also have bargained benefits.
  • Culture – This is the ‘wildcard.’ As you know, each organization is unique due to the culture that has evolved over time. This culture is most often reflected in the benefits offered to employees.

It is for these reasons that each organization must determine how competitive they wish their benefit offerings to be.

We are always happy to assist you with any questions that you may have!

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Lindex® Scores Released!

Press Release on LindexToday we issued our Press Release on the new Lindex tool recently developed by David P. Lind Benchmark.

As mentioned in my December 12th blog, Lindex® to be Released Soon, the Lindex is a new and innovative tool that allows Iowa employers to distill voluminous and complicated data into one relevant number.

An organization’s Lindex score will help Iowa employers:

  • Determine the competiveness of their benefits package.
  • Attract and retain a high quality workforce.
  • Decide whether benefit changes are required to keep your employee benefits competitive.

The Lindex is a composite score used as a reference when determining the quality of benefits offered by Iowa organizations. This index is the result of a sophisticated calculation based on the benefits data submitted by over 1,200 Iowa organizations from the latest 2012 Iowa Employer Benefits Study©.

Calculated once a year, the Lindex ranges from 0 to 100, with low scores reflecting fewer benefits offered at a higher cost to employees, while higher scores indicate more benefits being offered at a competitive cost.

In 2012, the overall Lindex score for Iowa employers (regardless of employer size and industry) was 73. The Lindex score will vary based on the employer size and industry. For example, employers with less than 10 employees have a Lindex score of 55, while employers with at least 1,000 employees averaged 84. Employers in the retail industry averaged 57, while state and local government employers averaged 78.

Below is a summary of the Lindex scores based on organization size:

Master Lindex® Slide - Employer Size

Below is a summary of the Lindex scores based on industry:

Master Lindex® Slide - Industry

Below is a summary of the Lindex scores based on Iowa’s four Congressional Districts:

Master Lindex® Slide - Congressional

It’s important to note that an organization with a Lindex score of 68 might appear to be somewhat low when compared to the overall statewide score of 73, but if this score is above the average Lindex score for similar organizations based on size and industry, then it could be considered a good score for that organization.

To purchase a copy of the 2012 Iowa Employer Benefits Study©, or any of the five industry reports, click here.

  1. Manufacturing
  2. Retail
  3. Healthcare & Social Services
  4. Finance & Insurance
  5. Government & Education

To learn more about the Lindex, please visit the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section of our website.

We invite you to stay in touch by subscribing to our blog.

Lindex® to be Released Soon!

David P. Lind BenchmarkDuring the second week in January, we will be releasing the Lindex score to the general public. In addition, 2012 Iowa Employer Benefits Study© participants who scored above the statewide “average” will receive their Lindex number prior to Christmas. Below is an explanation of the Lindex and why it matters to Iowa employers.

What is the Lindex®?

There is a vast array of employer benefits and insurance options and costs. How do employers know which sets of benefits are best? It is too difficult to take all of these variables into account. The Lindex simplifies this process. The Lindex is a complex algorithm that measures the availability, costs, and use of many key benefits and provides an indexed number between 0 and 100. It permits organizations to benchmark and compare their benefits to those offered by other organizations across Iowa.

Why should an employer use the Lindex®?

Employee benefits data can be both voluminous and complicated for any employer. The Lindex distills this data into one relevant number to provide clarity. Employers alter their benefits offerings as they adapt to changing economic conditions, but when doing so, they have no way of knowing whether such changes may put them at a competitive disadvantage when recruiting and retaining qualified employees. The Lindex simply allows the employer to compare their overall benefit offering to other employers on an on-going basis. As benefit offerings change, the employer will understand their competitive position at all times. All major benefits offered by employers are factored into the Lindex “score.”

How is it calculated?

About 1,000 organizations participate in the Iowa Employer Benefits Study© on an on-going basis each year. The Lindex is calculated from these study results. It is based on a variety of factors including types of benefits offered and employee costs associated with those benefits. The Lindex ranges from 0 to 100, with low scores indicating fewer and more expensive benefits, and higher scores indicating more benefits being offered at a lower cost.

How do organizations interpret the Lindex®?

As stated, the Lindex ranges from 0 to 100. A higher score indicates that an organization offers its employees more benefits at lower costs. However, benchmarking is important. The Lindex is calculated annually statewide and for each of several industries. An organization can assess their benefits compared to others in their industry throughout the state. For example, an organization with a Lindex of 68 might appear to be somewhat low, but if this score is above the average Lindex score for similar organizations then it could be considered a good score for your organization.

Why can employers trust the Lindex®?

Since 1999, David P. Lind and Data Point Research have conducted over 10,000 interviews with Iowa organizations. Depending upon the benefits offered by each organization, over 250 variables have been collected. That is a lot of information! When combined with the other research conducted, such as the Iowa Employment Values Study© and the professional expertise of David P. Lind Benchmark, the Lindex is an accurate, unbiased summary on employee benefits in Iowa.

How can the Lindex® help employers?

The Lindex provides benefits information from organizations throughout Iowa that can be used to assess, compare and improve your benefits offerings. Organizations can use their Lindex score as a recruiting tool to attract and retain high quality employees. Others can use it to determine whether benefits changes are required to keep their benefit offerings competitive with similar organizations.

How frequently is the Lindex® calculated?

On a statewide level, the Lindex is calculated once a year. New industry-level Lindices are published in addition to Lindices for the four Iowa Congressional Districts. New Lindices will be segmented by employer size, industry, as well as by congressional district.

This new measurement is not only unique to Iowa but to the country as a whole. Stay tuned for more information after the holidays!

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