Voluntary and the Small Case Market

Cost: $2,000; published 2016

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are over 1.1 million business establishments in the U.S. that employ between 10 and 100 employees. These small businesses represent 92 percent of all U.S. businesses and employ almost 28 million employees or just over one-quarter of the nation’s labor force employing at least 10 employees. Despite these statistics, the small case market continues to be underpenetrated.

Eastbridge’s Voluntary and the Small Case Market report analyzes the results and opportunities for selling voluntary benefits in the small employer market. This report is an update to Eastbridge’s 2014 report on the same topic. Specifically, the current report looks at:

  • The size of the small employer market
  • Which products are sold in this market
  • Small employer preferences that impact carrier service
  • The top carriers in the market
  • Any differences in attitudes or ownership for employees in the market
  • Opinions of brokers who focus on the small case market

Data in this report comes from several Eastbridge surveys including the MarketVisionTM employer and employee surveys. With this information, carriers will be in a better position to compete in the small case market.


View Table of Contents

1. Executive Summary

A. Study Objectives and Methodology

B. Key Findings

2. Detailed FIndings

A. The Market

1. Size of the Market

2. Benefits Offered

3. Prevalence of Voluntary

4. Voluntary Sales

5. Changes Likely to Benefits Program

6. Use of Exchanges


B. The Employer Viewpoint on Voluntary

1. Reasons for Offering Voluntary

2. Brokers

3. Number of Voluntary Carriers Used

4. Other Products from Voluntary Carrier

5. Importance Factors in Choosing a Voluntary Carrier

6. Voluntary Products Offered

7. Preferred Enrollment Methods

8. Allowable Methods of Educating and Communicating Benefits

9. Administrative Preferences of Small Employers


C. The Employee Viewpoint of Voluntary

1. Ownership of Voluntary

2. Voluntary Products Owned

3. Number of Voluntary Products Owned

4. Interest in Buying on a Voluntary Basis

5. Reasons for Buying Voluntary

6. Preferences for Learning about Voluntary

7. Enrollment Methods

8. Importance of Online Capabilities

9. Satisfaction with Enrollment


D. Carrier Viewpoint

1. Small Case Sales by Carrier


E. Broker Viewpoint

1. Top Products Sold

2. Enrollment Methods

3. Voluntary Carriers Used

4. Biggest Threat to Voluntary Business

5. Needed to be More Successful with Voluntary




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