Streamlining HR Services with Jodi Segal from Big Change Consulting 

by | May 26, 2023 | News | 0 comments

Call & Response: 

After this past week’s Call for Community Solutions, thanks to your active participation and engagement on a weekly basis, The Forbes Funds has now hosted/facilitated more than 4,726 virtual engagements with more than 39,923 participants.

GPNP Members and partners of The Forbes Funds have long requested support for navigating the HR landscape, which has prompted presentations from various consultants including Christie Cawley from tHRive, who provides a suite of resources through the tHRive cohorts and subscription model. But more workshops and engagements that dig into various insurance plans and how we weigh them against each other are crucial for helping organizations recruit and maintain top talent that will set the stage for additional human resources toolkits. We are pretty fortunate that Jodi Segal and Big Change, along with key partners such as Insperity, will be doing a deeper dive into this critical subject of streamlining HR supports over the next several months as part of our 24 Months of Learning.  

“When we think about the work Jodi’s focused on, it aligns with one of our core three pillars, which is back-office support. We had a concern pre-COVID around the cliff effect of nonprofits not strategically collaborating, looking at shared back office supports, and with COVID came new demands on HR as a lot of institutions started moving to hybrid ways of working. The Forbes Funds highlighted concerns about the capacity of our sector to manage back office supports in 2019 with the launch of tHRive. Post-COVID 19, the need for this type of support has grown. The role of HR is a critical function that is often times packed deeply within an organization and you typically only interface with as you come into an institution. However, as we made our pivot internally and started looking at racial equity and social justice as a construct for our work, we found it incredibly important that HR become an ally in the strategic process. As such, the relationship with HR has grown exponentially. If we practice business as usual, we’re missing an important opportunity to use HR as a catalyst for organizational change.” 

– Fred Brown | President & CEO | The Forbes Funds 

Doing Big Things 

Jodi Segal, Big Change Consulting’s Founder & Principal, has been helping nonprofit organizations startup, gear up, and clean up their operations, HR, and fundraising for 25 years. She has built strong and successful programs at growing local, state, and national organizations. After repeatedly witnessing nonprofits struggle with effective and efficient operations, Jodi recognized the lack of services to help. She designed a unique scope of work for Big Change Consulting to solve these problems. The benefit of Jodi’s experience with organizations is that she sees around corners and designs streamlined solutions that last. She is passionate about partnering with leaders to solve operations challenges so they can focus on the critical work of fulfilling their mission. Before founding Big Change Consulting, Jodi was Deputy Director at the Ohio Environmental Council. During her 13 years at OEC, she built their development department, oversaw marketing and communications, and led administration, finance, HR, and special projects.  

Big Change Consulting was founded with a mission to help nonprofits “start up, gear up and clean up.” Big Change works with you to build an effective and smart operation so you can focus on your mission. With 25 years of experience and a passion for collaboration, they are ready to help you – from operations to HR, management, and more. 

Dual Frameworks 

As you know, The Forbes Funds operates by selecting metrics from dual frameworks of the United Nations Development Goals and the Social Determinants of Health. Partnerships can be made based upon shared impacts from these frameworks to give us a place to align cross-sector work. Given the critical role that HR plays in advancing the overall well-being of organizations and individuals, the UNSDGs this week’s call and our presenter aligned with were #3 (Good Health & Well-Being), #8 Decent Work & Economic Growth), #10 (Reduced Inequalities) and #17 (Partnerships for the Goals). 

Similarly, the conversation this week demonstrated broad alignment with the Social Determinants of Health, specifically Health Care and Quality, Economic Stability, and, given the nuanced needs of individuals and health disparities and inequities, social and community and context were also highlighted. 

Key Considerations 

Our speaker this week left participants with these key considerations: 

  • Benefits have a key role in equity
  • Benefits options have changed a lot over the past several years   
  • Understanding the importance of having an expert in your corner to help navigate   
  • Consider the impact benefits have on equity
  • Benefits play a significant role in the recruitment & retention of staff 

“I’ve spent my 25-year career in nonprofits. As a fundraiser, recruiter, operations director, deputy director, and wearing all of the other hats that you need to lead a nonprofit. I found time and time again that nonprofits are under-resourced in their operations, so you don’t have the infrastructure or expertise you need to support strong programming. That’s why I founded Big Change Consulting in 2020 to help organizations like yours. We believe that benefits should be personalized to meet the needs of your employee population” 

– Jodi Segal | Founder | Big Change Consulting 

Target Audience: Small to large-sized nonprofits that may or may not have insurance benefits 

Why we need to have this conversation: 

  • Benefits are key to equity. The pandemic exacerbated pre-existing inequalities in the workplace. Everyone has their own set of challenges, whether it’s taking care of elderly loved ones, or kids, dealing with health issues, or navigating work-life balance. It may look different, but we all are dealing with something. Every employee deserves benefits that aren’t one-size-fits-all. Instead, they are personalized to meet their needs. 
  • Benefits are key to recruiting and retaining top talent 
  • Health insurance is the #1 most inflationary spend an organization has 
  • Getting the best benefits is hard. It requires expertise and relationships. Broker relationships to get quotes are a thing of the past 
  • There are solutions to the historical problem of being too small to get good benefits at a competitive price. 

Description of plan types: 

  • Standard Insurance (Health) 
  • Medical, dental, vision, life, AD&D. 
    • Consider Deductible, Co-pays, Prescriptions, Out-of-pocket max, Urgent care and ED visits, access to providers, cost to employee and employer. 
    • There are a lot of potential long-term expenses to consider. 
    • Consider the types of insurance available and the cost for the employee and the employer. 
  • Disability Insurance: 
    • Short-term disability insurance pays a weekly benefit, typically for three to six months, to employees who cannot do the work due to a non-work related illness or injury, including pregnancy. 
    • Long-term disability insurance provides income protection if an employee is unable to work for an extended period of time. Both short-term and long-term disability replaces typically 60 to 66 percent of income, and the length of time the policy pays out depends on the plan design that is selected.  
  • Savings Accounts 
    • HSA: health savings account. available with high deductible plans. is used to pay for qualified medical, pharmacy, dental, and vision expenses and save on taxes. You must be covered by a high-deductible health plan to open an HSA. The employee owns their HSA and the money in it. It’s not a “use it or lose it account”; funds roll over from year to year. can be converted to retirement savings. There are annual limits set each year by the IRS. 
    • HRA: health reimbursement arrangement is a kind of health spending account provided and owned by an employer. The money in it pays for qualified expenses, like medical, pharmacy, dental, and vision, as determined by the employer. 
    • FSA: A flexible spending account is available to all employees, is used to pay for qualified medical, pharmacy, dental, and vision expenses and save on taxes. The employer owns their HSA and the money in it. It’s a “use it or lose it account.” There are annual limits set each year by the IRS. 
  • Ancillary benefits or cafeteria plans (i.e., Aflac): can cover expenses such as ambulance transportation, blood, drugs, and medical supplies like bandages. These benefits are usually layered on top of major medical coverage, so they are purchased in conjunction. Who provides policies How do people use them, what drives up the cost, how to stabilize expenses, why yes/no 
  • Open market/traditional broker 
  • MEWA – is a “multiple employer welfare arrangement” that provides benefits to employees of two or more employers that are not part of the same controlled group of businesses. 
  • Health care sharing plan – you pay a certain share amount each month (like a premium) as well as an “annual unshared amount” for your own expenses (like a deductible) that your medical expenses must exceed before the plan shares your expenses. 
  • PEO – all-inclusive, discounted, and potentially more stable premiums paired with the administrative fee. **workshop coming up this Summer with Jodi and Insperity**  
  • ASO – benefits admin without insurance, paired with MEWA or broker.  

Recommended Steps for determining which insurance works for your organization: 

  1. Conduct an employee survey to find out what your staff wants, what is working for them, and what is not. 
  1. Ensure you have a team you trust to be experts and to work in your best interest. If you don’t, then please reach out, and we can make connections for you. 
  1. Please ahead of open enrollment. It takes time to evaluate options, get a contract in place, educate staff, and then be ready for open enrollment. 
  1. Compare costs. Look at potential rate increases, onboarding costs, monthly fees, and where you will save money and staff time. Big Change has a cost comparison spreadsheet you can use and will find at the end of this week’s digest. As of 2022, the average medical insurance employee-only plan is $7,200/yr. The average family plan is $20k/yr. 
  1. Build over time. It is easier to add than takeaway! Don’t add all at first and find out that you cannot sustain them. 
  1. Support your staff. Ensure you have the support you need to maintain your plans over time. That may be internal, external, or both. Again, if you need external support, then please reach out, and Big Change can help or connect you. 

Stay tuned for more details! 

View the HR Cost Comparison Tool Spreadsheet created by Jodi and available to those who joined the call here: HR Cost Comparison Template.xlsx 

To learn more about Big Change Consulting, please visit: Big Change Consulting 

For more information on the Big Change Consulting Nonprofit Operations Workshop, click here: Nonprofit Operations Workshop — Big Change Consulting 

We will be off next week for Memorial Day, so please join us on Monday, June 5th for our next Call for Community Solutions. As always, feel free to reach out to emily@forbesfunds.org or erin@forbesfunds.org  with any questions! 

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