WEEK1


Benefit Plans (graded)

Employer-sponsored benefits reflect the culture and business of the organization, and plans should be crafted and selected accordingly. Think about your current (or former) organization's benefit plan. Did it help to improve the quality of your work, as well as your personal life? Why or why not? Was it a generous benefits program or were there specific benefits you felt should have been included?



Benefit Planning Process (graded)

As part of conducting a benefit plan needs assessment, a human resource professional must consider the organization’s business strategy, as well as its compensation philosophy. What do you think is the next step that should be taken? What are some of the possible outcomes of a benefit plan needs assessment?






WEEK 2



Role of Government (graded)

Other than the mandates of the Internal Revenue Code (IRC) and a few other ineffectual reporting and disclosure requirements, benefit programs were practically unregulated by the federal government before the major shift that came with the enactment of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) of 1974, which was primarily aimed at traditional defined benefit (DB) pension plans but applicable to other employer-sponsored retirement and benefit programs. What is the government’s current role in regulating the administration of employee benefits? Do you think there is too little or too much government intervention? Why?


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Government-Mandated Benefits (graded)

There are certain benefits that are legislatively mandated and cannot be altered or dropped by an organization for any reason other than the organization is closing its doors for good! Social security and Medicare, unemployment insurance, worker’s compensation, COBRA, and FMLA are all federal- and state-mandated programs. What do you think determines the types of programs that the government chooses to make mandatory? Do you feel these programs are efficient and effective? Why or why not?