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At CaliforniaChoice, we’re committed to helping our members stay healthy in the new year. Our partnership with the ChooseHealthy program reflects this commitment. The program gives CaliforniaChoice members access to savings on a variety of health and wellness products at reduced rates.

With ChooseHealthy, you can save on top brands, including Fitbit®, Garmin®, Vitamix®, and other top products and fitness centers. The program also includes:

You can also join any of 4,500+ premium exercise studios with 20-70% discounts on most.

More Member Value Suite Savings

As a member of CaliforniaChoice, you and your employees can also take advantage of savings and discounts on:

Talk to a Broker to Get Started

If you’re adding employee health insurance for the first time in 2022, or if you’re shopping to make sure you’re getting the most for your benefits dollars, be sure to ask your broker about CaliforniaChoice. In addition to offering employees access to dozens of coverage options from eight premier health plans, you and your employees also get “extras” with CaliforniaChoice. If you don’t have an insurance broker, we make it easy to search for one here.

It’s December, and there’s no better time to look back on 2021’s big achievements. Let’s celebrate how far we’ve come as we look forward to the year ahead.

5. The Launch of the New Enrollment Squad

The new enrollment squad provides a personalized and fun introduction to CaliforniaChoice. New members learn about the CaliforniaChoice program in detail and the variety of choices available to them.

4. Bringing Cigna + Oscar into Our Portfolio

Cigna + Oscar joined CaliforniaChoice in 2021 – combining the power of Cigna’s health care provider networks with Oscar’s member-focused experience and technology.

3. Achieving a Significant Membership Milestone

CaliforniaChoice reached a new milestone in 2021, with an all-time high membership surpassing 339,000. This achievement is a testament to the value of providing choice for something as important as health care.

2. The Roll Out of the New Calchoice.com

CaliforniaChoice launched a new, award-winning website this year, giving employers, members, and brokers access to a customized experience and streamlined functionality. This was a key milestone in a larger digitization strategy.

1. 25 Years of Proving Health Care Choices

CaliforniaChoice celebrated 25 years of service to small businesses in California in 2021. No other single health care program in the state offers more employee choice and greater access to health care providers. Our easy-to-manage program offers access to eight health plans, 80,000+ doctors, and 400+ hospitals – and the widest selection of HMO, PPO, and EPO plans in California.

Talk to a Broker to Learn More

If you’re considering health coverage for your employees for the first time in 2022, ask your broker about CaliforniaChoice. Or, if you want to find out how you can offer more choice while still controlling your costs, talk with a broker about CaliforniaChoice. If you don’t have a broker, we make it easy to search for one here.

CaliforniaChoice started more than 25 years ago. But, our commitment to providing the most flexible program in the state for small businesses is stronger than ever. We continue to evolve our health plan portfolio to better serve the needs of our customers. That’s why 94% of our employer groups renew their benefits with us each year.

Program Enhancements

We expanded our roster of health plans in 2021 to add Cigna + Oscar. The partnership builds on Oscar’s focus on personalized care and adds Cigna’s providers in the LocalPlus® network.

Employees can now choose from 16 Cigna + Oscar EPO (Exclusive Provider Organization) plan options. Cigna + Oscar includes four EPO plans in each of the Affordable Care Act metal tiers (Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum).

Two robust networks are available: LocalPlus and the Open Access Plus national network. LocalPlus offers access to 23,400+ health care practitioners and 63 hospitals in Northern California. It adds 36,700 health care practitioners and 189 hospitals in Southern California.

Employers can offer one network or both, side by side.

If an EPO from Cigna + Oscar is not the right choice for all of your employees, that’s okay. CaliforniaChoice offers seven other health plans in our program. Your employees can choose whichever health plan is right for them.

For example, one employee might choose an EPO from Cigna + Oscar or Anthem Blue Cross. Another might choose a PPO because it includes a particular doctor or hospital in its network. A third employee might select an HSA-compatible HMO from Kaiser Permanente or UnitedHealthcare, or an HMO plan from Health Net. Others might select Sharp Health Plan, Sutter Health Plus, or Western Health Advantage. Whatever your employees’ needs may be, it’s their plan choice with CaliforniaChoice.

Network Expansion

For 2022, UnitedHealthcare is expanding its Harmony network. It now includes Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, San Francisco, San Mateo, Solano, and Sonoma counties.

The Harmony network is already available in Southern California. It combines quality care, technology, tools, and resources. That helps UnitedHealthcare members improve their patient experience and outcomes.

Employer Cost Control

Beyond offering more choice to employees, you’ll appreciate that CaliforniaChoice puts you in charge of your benefits costs. You decide just how much to contribute to employees’ health insurance premiums. You can choose a Fixed Percentage Amount (50% to 100%) toward a specific benefit. Or, you may prefer a Fixed Dollar Amount for employees.

Whatever you choose, your employees then use your generous contribution toward the cost of the plans they prefer. If they pick plans that cost more than your contribution, they simply pay the difference.

Your contribution amount is locked-in for a year. That simplifies your budgeting. If you want to, you can change your contribution at renewal next year.

The advantages to CaliforniaChoice do not stop there. CaliforniaChoice offers valuable extra benefits, too, including:

Ask your broker about the Business Solutions Suite and Member Value Suite.

Learn More

If you’re considering health coverage for your employees in 2022, talk with a broker. A broker can deliver a custom health insurance quote for your business. Keep in mind, rates are the same whether you go through a broker or get coverage directly from a health plan.

The CaliforiaChoice program is only available through a broker. If you don’t have one, we make it easy to search for one in your area here.

As an employer, you may be wondering if your employees are eligible for Group Health Insurance. Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), more individuals than ever are eligible for coverage. Federal law now requires that qualified small businesses provide their employees access to health insurance coverage.

ACA Requirements

The current health of your employees isn’t a factor in that requirement. The ACA ensures all have the ability to enroll. If the business meets the legal entity requirements and the group meets underwriting and other guidelines, coverage is likely available through multiple health plans.

Even if a group does not meet a carrier’s enrollment and premium contribution rules, it may still be eligible to enroll employees for coverage. The ACA’s Special Open Enrollment Window occurs annually from November 15 to December 15.

Consumer Protection and Coverage Standards

The ACA expanded health insurance access and increased consumer protections. It established coverage standards for Individual and Small Group plans. And, it created a coverage mandate for Applicable Large Employers (ALEs).

Whether a business is an ALE is determined annually based on the average size of the employer’s workforce during the prior year. If an employer has fewer than 50 full-time employees, on average during the prior year, the business is not an ALE. It is not subject to the ACA’s employer shared responsibility provisions. (This is often referred to as the employer mandate.)

If an employer has at least 50 full-time employees, including full-time equivalents, on average during the prior year, the business is an ALE for the current year. That means the business is subject to the employer shared responsibility provisions as well as annual employer reporting requirements.

If you’re unsure of your ALE status, an ACA Full-Time Equivalent calculator is available on the CaliforniaChoice website. Also available are ACA Penalties and ACA Safe Harbor calculators and HR Calculators for absenteeism, cost per hire, and employee turnover. More information on ALEs is on the IRS website.

Deciding Who to Cover

If you are not an ALE, it’s up to you who’s covered by your health plan. You can make coverage available to:

You must make coverage available to all who qualify under your benefits guidelines. If you include full-time and part-time employees and dependents, you have to offer coverage to all equally. You can set your own minimum work hours per week for benefit-eligible part-time employees. Just be sure your rules work within insurer participation guidelines.

What you put toward the premium for full-time employees, part-time workers, and dependents can be different. Many employers pay 50% or more of full-time employees’ premiums. An employer may pay less (or a flat amount) for dependents and part-time workers.

Who May Not Qualify

If you operate a business on your own, without other employees, you do not qualify for group health coverage. But, you should be able to purchase coverage on your own. You can get it directly through an insurer, a broker, or the Covered California public exchange.

If you run a family business, and you work with other members of your family (such as a spouse, in-law, son or daughter, or a combination), you may qualify as a group. It depends on if all employees are members of your family, or if family members are a part of your group’s total enrollment.

ACA-Compliant Plans

The ACA established a standard for Health Insurance offered to individuals and small groups. All plans considered ACA-compliant must include 10 essential health benefits (EHBs), including:

Coverage for birth control and breastfeeding must also be included.

Ask About Value-Adds

Be sure to look for or ask your broker about any value-added benefits. For example, CaliforniaChoice includes a range of free products and services for you, your business, and your employees.

The CaliforniaChoice Business Solutions Suite and Member Value Suite include:

Comparing Coverage

If you’re considering Group Health Insurance for your business and employees, you can:

Shop on your own

Shop using a broker

How you research your options is up to you. Using a broker can help simplify the process and won’t cost you more. A broker will know the benefits, provider networks, and health plans available in your area, and can help you sort through the details. If you don’t have a broker, you can search for one here.

Maybe you’re in the market for the first time shopping for a health plan for your small business employees. Or, you’re looking again because you want to compare prices to be sure you’re getting the most value for your dollar. A great place to start is to talk with a broker.

An insurance broker can help you shop and compare local options. Using a broker’s services does not cost you money but could deliver significant savings because of their expertise.

Estimating 2022 Employee Health Insurance Costs

The 2021 Best Practices in Health Care Survey by Willis Towers Watson found employers expect a 5.2% increase in health plan costs in 2022. This represents an increase slightly lower than the 2021 projection, but it is sharply higher the actual 2020 increase of 2.1%.

The Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) reports Willis Tower Watson found an average employer cost of $13,360 in 2021. That’s $1,113.33 per month in 2021, up from $1,041.75 in 2020.

Employee premium contributions in 2021 increased slightly to $3,331 annually ($277.58 monthly) in 2021, versus $3,269 per year ($272.42 per month) in 2020. Employees paid an additional $2,023 toward deductibles, co-pays, and co-insurance in 2021, according to findings by Aon.

On an “hour worked” basis, a September 2021 Bureau of Labor Statistics report found private industry employer costs for workers averaged $36.64 per hour worked in June 2021. That figure includes average wage and salary costs of $25.89 per hour worked and benefits costs of $10.76 per hour. The average health insurance benefits cost was $2.63 per hour worked, over seven percent of total compensation.

In contrast, state and local government compensation costs were 45% higher, and health insurance benefits costs were more than double: $6.10 per hour worked. Civilian worker compensation averaged $38.91 per hour; health insurance cost averaged $3.09 per hour worked.

A Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) survey in 2021 found these average annual premiums for employer-sponsored coverage across all plan types:

The average single and family premiums increased four percent over 2020.

Premiums for workers in small and large firms were similar: $7,813 for small groups for single coverage; $7,709 for large firms for single coverage. Family coverage premiums were $21,804 for small firms and $22,389 for large firms.

On average, insured employees contribute 17% to the premium cost for single coverage. Those with family plans contribute an average of 28% toward their premium. At small firms, covered workers’ contributions are higher for family coverage: 37% on average.

The KFF analysis found average 2021 worker contributions for single coverage were:

For family coverage, the average annual employee contributions were:

The KFF data for 2021 was released in November 2021.

If the previously mentioned 5.2 percent increase for 2022 holds true, premiums for all plans could top $8,125 for single coverage and $23,376 for family coverage next year.

What Affects Premiums

There’s a lot that affects what you pay for health insurance, including things outside of your control. Investopedia says these factors can influence insurance costs:

Required Offering by ALEs

A major provision of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) is the mandate for Applicable Large Employers (ALEs). An ALE is an employer with at least 50 full-time employees (FTEs), including full-time equivalents. The mandate requires ALEs to offer Minimum Essential Coverage to full-time employees and eligible dependents.

If your business is not an ALE, you are not required to offer ACA-compliant health coverage. However, employers with fewer employees often offer benefits, including health insurance. It can help them recruit and retain their best employees. Benefits can be an employer differentiator in a competitive talent marketplace.  

As an ALE, if you do not offer health insurance to eligible employees and dependents, you are subject to a penalty. The “trigger” would be if an employee receives a federal subsidy to get coverage.  The employee would need to apply through the Covered California public health insurance exchange.

An even larger penalty applies if the coverage you offer is not affordable to employees or does not provide minimum value. In 2022, “affordable” means the employee’s cost does not exceed 9.61% of household income for the lowest-cost, self-only coverage option.

A plan passes the ACA minimum value test if it includes certain coverage and pays at least 60% of the total cost of medical services. That is equivalent of a Bronze tier plan or better. ACA plans are available in four metal tiers: Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. Each tier offers a different level of support for covered services, ranging from 60% to 90%.

Controlling Costs with CaliforniaChoice

In addition to employee choice, one of the things that employers love about CaliforniaChoice is the ability you have to control your costs.

You decide what you want to contribute to your employees’ health insurance. You can choose a Fixed Percentage (50% to 100%) of a specific plan and/or benefits. Or, you can select a Fixed Dollar Amount for each employee. Your employees can then apply your generous contribution to the health plan and benefits they like best.

You or an employee might pick choose from several options:

With CaliforniaChoice, it’s the employee’s choice. If the plan an employee prefers costs more than your contribution, the employee pays the difference. It’s that simple.

CaliforniaChoice offers greater access. You can choose from more doctors, specialists, and hospitals than any other health benefit option in the state. Our provider networks include 80,000+ doctors and 400+ hospitals.

Talk With a Broker to Learn More

Ask your employee benefits broker for a customized quote for your business. You can learn more about the advantages offered by CaliforniaChoice. If you don’t already have a broker, we can help you find one here.

The decision to offer group health insurance to employees is not always an easy one for a business owner or manager to make. While most employers want to do the right thing and make health coverage available to workers, the cost can sometimes be an obstacle.

Even if your business is an Applicable Large Employer (ALE), your workers may not fully value it. (Find out more about ALEs on the IRS website.) What can you tell them to help employees appreciate their group health coverage?

Group Vs. Individual Coverage

If your employees were insured before under a group health plan, they make take health insurance benefits for granted. That’s not unusual, although some are reconsidering their health insurance options in response to COVID-19.

What’s important for you and them to know is not every group health plan is the same. If you offer the CaliforniaChoice private exchange, employees get more choice. You also gain the ability to control your annual benefits costs.

Unlike coverage through a single insurer, CaliforniaChoice offers:

You control how much you want to put toward employees’ benefits. You can choose a fixed dollar amount or a fixed percentage contribution. Plus, when you choose coverage from CaliforniaChoice, you’re able to lock in your cost for 12 months.

Group health insurance offers many advantages over individual health:

Value-Added Benefits

Coverage offered through an employer may also come with “extras” at no added cost to the employee – or your business. For example, CaliforniaChoice offers two programs that offer many benefits to your business and your employees.

The CaliforniaChoice Business Solutions Suite includes:

The CaliforniaChoice Member Value Suite includes discounts on a wide range of things that you and your employees want:

Learn More from a Broker

There are so many benefits to CaliforniaChoice – and to group health insurance in general. Be sure your employees understand the advantages. To learn more about how CaliforniaChoice can expand employees’ options and save money for your business, talk with a broker.

It may surprise you to learn that a broker’s services do not cost you anything. In fact, using a benefits professional could save you money. That’s because an experienced broker has the expertise to help you find coverage to fit your employees – and your budget. If you don’t already have a broker, we can help you find one.

It’s November, when many of us reflect on the things we’re thankful for. When it comes to health insurance coverage, CaliforniaChoice members are thankful for the freedom and flexibility our program offers.

1. More Choices

CaliforniaChoice offers more health plan choices than any other program in California. Members can choose from 110+  options, including PPOs, EPOs, and HMOs. Participating health plans include Anthem Blue Cross, Cigna + Oscar, Health Net, Kaiser Permanente, Sharp Health Plan, Sutter Health Plus, UnitedHealthcare, and Western Health Advantage.

You and your employees also have access to plans in every Affordable Care Act (ACA) metal tier. You can choose Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. Plus, it’s easy to shop and compare plans. The Online Plan Comparison Tool shows you what plans include your preferred doctors and hospitals. The Rx Search tool lets you find out what plans include your needed prescription drugs.

2. Employer Cost Control

Controlling costs is also important for small business owners. CaliforniaChoice makes it easy for you to work within your budget. With our program, you decide how much you want to contribute to your employees’ health insurance premiums. You can select a Fixed Percentage Amount (50% to 100%) toward a specific benefit. Or, you can choose a Fixed Dollar Amount, for each employee. Keep in mind, your contribution has to be the same for all employees.

Employees then use your contribution toward the cost of the plans they prefer. If they pick plans that cost more than your contribution, they simply pay the difference.

The amount you choose to put toward employees’ benefits is locked-in for 12 months. That simplifies your budgeting. If you want to, you have the flexibility to change your contribution at renewal next year.

3. Value-Added Extras

Better budget control and more options are not the only things that set CaliforniaChoice apart. Members are thankful for the free member perks as well.

CaliforniaChoice offers valuable extra benefits in the Business Solutions Suite and Member Value Suite. These include:

Talk with a Broker to Learn More

Your health insurance broker can provide you with more information about why more than 25,000 business have coverage through CaliforniaChoice . Ask about a custom quote for your employees today. If you don’t have a broker, we make it easy to search for one here.

A new calendar year often means a new benefits year for employers. Several health plans are introducing new options and benefits for 2022. Some government-set limits are changing, too. Here’s a look of what you need to know for the coming year.

HDHP and HSA Limits: Two things that often change annually are limits established by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). These include High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP) maximum out-of-pocket amounts and Health Savings Account (HSA) contributions. Below is a comparison of 2021 and 2022 amounts.

Contribution and Out-of-Pocket Limits for HSAs and HDHPs
 20222021Change
HSA contribution limit (employer + employee)Self-only: $3,650 Family: $7,300Self-only: $3,600 Family: $7,200Self-only: +$50 Family: +$100
HDHP maximum out-of-pocket amounts (deductibles, copayments, and other amounts – but not premiums)Self-only: $7,050 Family: $14,100Self-only: $7,000 Family: $14,000Self-only: +$50 Family: +$100
HDHP minimum deductiblesSelf-only: $1,400 Family: $2,800Self-only: $1,400 Family: $2,800No change for either Self-only or Family
Source: IRS, as reported by SHRM

The HSA catch-up contribution for individuals age 55 and older is the same in 2021 and 2022: $1,000.

Affordable Care Act (ACA) Compliant Plans: The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) annually sets out-of-pocket or cost-sharing limits. The table below shows the new limits for 2022, and the current 2021 limits.

Maximum out-of-pocket for ACA compliant plans
20222021Change
Self-only: $8,700Self-only: $8,550+$150
Family: $17,400Family: $17,100+$300

Affordability and Minimum Value: Under the ACA employer mandate, Applicable Large Employers (ALEs) must provide health insurance to full-time employees. If they do not, they face an IRS penalty. Generally, an ALE is an employer with 50 or more full-time or full-time-equivalent employees on average during the previous calendar year.

Offering coverage is not enough, though. Insurance must provide minimum value (Bronze tier or better) and it must be affordable to employees. If you are an ALE and one of your full-time employees goes to the state public exchange to purchase coverage utilizing a premium tax credit, you are subject to noncompliance penalties under IRS Sections 4980H(a) and 4980h(b).

If you are not sure whether your organization is an ALE, CaliforniaChoice offers useful ACA calculators on its website. There’s an ACA Full-Time Equivalent Calculator, an ACA Penalties Calculator, and an ACA Safe Harbor Calculator. Calculators to help you determine your cost per hire, employee turnover, and absenteeism costs are also available.

For plan years starting in 2022, the adjusted contribution percentage for affordability is 9.61%. This marks a decline from 9.83% in 2021.

That means the employee’s share of the premium for the lowest-cost, self-only coverage option cannot exceed 9.61% of the employee’s rate of pay, W2 Box 1 income, or the Federal Poverty Level (FPL).

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) notes this decline could mean what was affordable in 2021 may not be affordable in 2022. If that the case, the employer’s contribution would have to increase even if everything else stays the same as far as benefits and costs.

According to SHRM, if a business offers a 2022 health plan that costs employees no more than $103.14 each month (for employee-only coverage), it will automatically meet the affordability standard under the FPL safe harbor.

If an employer uses the FPL safe harbor, it must be used for all employees It cannot use Rate of Pay for some and FPL for others. In 2021, that FPL safe harbor amount was $104.53 per month.

Surprise Billing: Beyond plan, contribution, and affordability changes, there’s a big “surprise billing” change in 2022. The federal government has issued new regulations that restrict excessive out-of-pocket costs for consumers from surprise and balance billing for out-of-network services.

Surprise and balance billing happens when individuals receive emergency or non-emergency care from health care providers that are outside of their health plan’s network.

Patients frequently go to a hospital because it accepts their insurance, but some physicians and specialists may not be a part of the insurer’s provider network.

Balance billing occurs when a provider bills the patient for something not covered by insurance. Medicare and Medicaid prohibit balance billing. However, it is often standard practice for private insurance.

The New York Times reported in September 2021 that as many as one in five emergency room visits results in a surprise medical bill.

The new federal rule that takes effect January 1, 2022:

There has been some pushback from hospitals and other providers about the new rule’s arbitration provisions. However, major changes to the measure are not expected before its 2022 implementation.

Talk with a Broker to Learn More: Your insurance broker can provide more information about what’s ahead for 2022. A broker can also help you find health coverage for your employees that fits your company budget and offers more employee choice. If you don’t have a current broker, you can search for one here.

In today’s talent market, job seekers expect a competitive salary and benefits package from their employer. That includes more than just Major Medical health insurance coverage, and often Dental, Vision, and more.

Employees want the ability to customize their benefits to address their individual and family needs. According to MetLife’s 19th Annual Employee Benefit Trends Study, released in 2021, employees are “placing increasing value on feeling safe, protected, and prepared across all areas of well-being – and they need employers to restore that sense of security through benefits and other support.”

COVID-19 brought with it an increased focus on health insurance and its importance. It also cast a spotlight on other coverage options. That doesn’t mean you have to overhaul your current benefits program to attract talent. CaliforniaChoice allows you to offer more without spending more.

Why CaliforniaChoice?

Since 1996, CaliforniaChoice has offered small businesses a way to offer multiple health plans to their employees, while still controlling their benefits costs. CaliforniaChoice offers everything you and your employees want in a single program:

Another Way to Help Control Costs

If you’re concerned about the costs associated with additional coverage like Dental, Vision, or Supplemental Health coverage (like Accident, Hospital Indemnity, Critical Illness, and Disability Insurance), you might consider offering coverage on a partially paid or voluntary basis. Again, you determine what amount – if any – you want to contribute to employees’ coverage. You can fund it all, or share the cost with employees. For voluntary coverage, all of the premium can be funded through employee payroll deductions, with no added cost for your business.

A September 2021 article by Benefits Pro cites an increased interest – among employees and employers – for voluntary benefits. Three in four employees said voluntary benefits would affect their employer’s ability to retain them – compared to 68% a year ago.

Among HR professionals, the vast majority (83%) believe offering more voluntary benefits helps them retain employees, engage employees (72%), and attract new talent (72%).

Whether you bear the cost entirely, or share costs with your employees, they are likely to appreciate the availability of more options, so they can tailor coverage to their individual and family needs. Offering more helps you differentiate yourself when it comes to recruitment and retention.

Explore Your Options with a Broker

One of the best ways to compare benefits costs and learn about options for your business – and your employees – is to talk with a broker. An employee benefits broker can help you sort out the health care alphabet (PPOs, HMOs, EPOs, HDHPs, and more), and provide a custom quote for your business. You won’t pay anything for your broker’s service either – and it could save you money because your local broker will know what’s available in your area and what health plans include your preferred doctors and hospitals. If you don’t already have a broker, we can help find one here.

It’s almost time for Halloween and it’s a good idea to start planning your workplace festivities from now.

2021 looks a little different than last year, but many offices are still not back in the office full time. That doesn’t mean you can’t celebrate. Here’s a list of ways to do so safely with employees in the office or working remotely.

Spooky Decorations: Get in the Halloween spirit with spider webs, caution tape, and other ghostly decorations. If your employees have returned to work, even part-time, you can have a decorating contest. Encourage participation by awarding a winner.

Make sure you remind employees that lighted decorations need to be turned off at the end of the day. Decorations cannot violate fire or safety codes.

Party Bags: While a party may not be the best idea during a pandemic, that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on treats. Put together a trick-or-treat bag for each employee in advance and hand them out to get everyone in the Halloween spirit.

Costume Contest: Nothing screams Halloween like a costume contest. You can create categories like “most creative,” scariest, and funniest.

Something to keep in mind – the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) suggests these do’s and don’ts when it comes to costumes in the workplace:

Halloween 2021 is on a Sunday, so you may want to plan your costume contest for the Friday before or another day if you’re not in the office daily. You could also host your contest virtually.

Pumpkin Carving: This can work for employees in the office and for those working at home. For on-site staff, you can ask participants to carve their pumpkins at home and bring them to work for judging.

If you’re not concerned about a potential mess, and can still keep employees socially distant, have them carve their pumpkins at the office. Provide the tools they’ll need and choose a spot to de-seed equipped with carving tools. Aprons also help.

If you’re concerned about a mess, pumpkins decorated with a Sharpie works, too!

More ways to celebrate:

START PLANNING NOW!

Don’t wait to announce your activities. Get started today! That way, your employees have plenty of time to plan.