Employer mandate delay — a new opportunity?

Link : August 16, 2013

Sometimes opportunity knocks in unexpected ways.
Take, for example, the Obama administration’s decision to delay enforcement of the employer mandate provisions of the Affordable Care Act for a year, at least until January 2015.
Businesses that were wrestling with the challenge of how to pay for the anticipated higher health-care costs for their employees now have the opportunity to use their money elsewhere.
According to a recent article in The Wall Street Journal, about a quarter of small-business owners affected by the delay plan to invest in equipment and facilities, while 16 percent plan to add employees and 15 percent plan to improve benefits or increase salaries.
Making these moves now could make sense for your business too. Improving your company’s infrastructure or strengthening your team now, while you have some financial flexibility, may help you build profit margins so you are in a better position to cope with higher health-care costs down the road. With many indicators pointing toward a recovery that will pick up steam, it’s better to make capital investments while interest rates remain low. With the national unemployment rate at 7.4 percent, there are still qualified workers in many industries actively looking for jobs.
With so many other businesses seeing the delay in enforcement of the employer mandate as an opportunity to strengthen their operations, you should consider your options as well. Your competitors may be among those moving forward, and you will not want to be left behind.