Brittany Baer

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So far Brittany Baer has created 187 blog entries.

TPG Market Commentary: Is High Inflation Coming?

We are now more than halfway through the year and the stock market continues the ascent that began in 2009. One of the most significant events in the quarter was the Federal Reserve’s decision to increase short-term interest rates again. This was an appropriate action given the economy is doing well enough to warrant rates above zero, where the Fed held them between 2008 and 2015. Of the Fed’s two mandates, full employment and stable prices, both are currently hitting their targets.

Around this point in the business cycle, when the unemployment rate is low, one fear that comes up is accelerating inflation. This quarterly commentary focuses on the phenomena of inflation, which famed economist Milton Friedman once described as taxation without legislation.

What is inflation?
On a basic level, inflation is the general rise in prices of goods and services. Inflation is usually mentioned in a negative light, eliciting images of hyperinflation and needing a wheelbarrow full of cash to buy a loaf of bread. A little inflation, however, is considered healthy for an economy, as long as wages are growing too. When inflation gets too high though, it’s a sign the economy is overheating and is usually a precursor to the next downturn. A decline in prices, or deflation, on the surface, sounds good. Who wouldn’t want to pay less for goods and services? The reality is though, that in a deflationary environment, people pull back on spending because they can purchase things at a lower price in the future, which causes the economy to weaken. If people think prices will be higher in the future, it can pull forward spending and spur economic growth. This is why inflation is like Goldilocks, we don’t want it too hot or too cold, but somewhere […]

2018-06-21T13:26:22-08:00

Video & Presentation Now Available from Paid Family Leave Webinar

Creating Compliant Programs That Attract and Retain Top Talent

Watch Webinar Video:

Double click on the video to make it larger.

View Presentation:

Click to download the presentation.

Contact The Partners Group Subscribe

Overview:

The U.S. is one of the only developed countries lacking a mandate for income protection to employees who need to take time off to care for themselves and their families. As a result, states and municipalities are looking to ensure protection for employees now more than ever. Where state and municipal mandates conflict with existing time off policies and practices, employers are left to sort through their own compliance while ensuring their programs still attract and retain the best employees.

Brycie Repphun from The Partners Group and Kimberly Mashburn from The Hartford took a look at the current landscape of Paid Family Leave.

During this webcast we focused on the following:

  • Discussed current and evolving federal, state, and municipal regulations impacting Paid Sick Leave, Paid Parental Leave and Paid Family Leave
  • Dove into recent studies and surveys highlighting the growing trend of Employer-Funded Paid Family and Paid Parental Leaves
  • Provided an overview of the process your organization can follow to ensure your Paid Time Off programs remain compliant
  • Celebrated the successes of employers who have turned mandates into opportunities to create innovative and competitive time off programs to enhance their Talent Acquisition and Retention Strategies

Presenters:

Brycie has spent the entirety of her career in the field of absence […]

2018-07-12T16:31:33-08:00

Workplace Wellness Programs: Benefits, Prevention Strategies & Helpful Resources to Get You Started

Benefits of Wellness Programs:

The benefits of an employee wellness program from an employer perspective:

  • Improved employee health
  • Controlled healthcare costs
  • Increase productivity
  • Reduced absenteeism
  • Improved job satisfaction
  • Easier recruitment and retention of employees

Our employers sight a variety of different reasons from:

  • “We want to improve the health of our employees”
  • “We want to control our healthcare costs”
  • “We want our employees to be more engaged and satisfied on a day‑to‑day basis”
  • Even down to, “We just want to put some strategies in place that allows us to be a little more competitive in the marketplace.”

The benefits of a workplace wellness program from the employees’ perspective:

  • Weight loss
  • Stress relief
  • Reduced health risks and/or conditions
  • Improved work performance
  • Increase energy and satisfaction

Wellness Program Prevention Strategies:

It’s important to note that before we can begin to talk about the type of health promotion program appropriate for any organization, we must begin to shift from a culture of sickness and disease to one that is rooted in prevention and wellness. There are a range of activities and interventions geared towards reducing health risks or threats to an employee’s health. Listed below are some primary prevention strategies, which are aimed at preventing disease or injury before it happens.

Primary prevention strategies– Help people stay healthy and productive:

• Nutrition
• Movement
• Ergonomics
• Lifestyle management
• Health education

Primary prevention strategies focus on creating a healthy place of work, including identifying and controlling stressors or barriers so that employees are engaged in their health, have access to healthy resources on site, and have access to programs to get and stay healthy.

Strategies could be focused on the individual or the entire organization through group wellness or team based activities. Some primary prevention strategies focus on education about healthy and safe habits, such as: exercising regularly, eating well, and not smoking.

Those […]

2017-07-10T11:03:14-08:00

The Partners Group Rod Cruickshank is Interviewed in Healthcare Insurance Technology Business Trends Article

Photo courtesy of Leader’s Edge

By Leaders Edge Magazine: Tech-enabled transparency is a major step in regaining control of healthcare costs. Click for article

 

 

Rod Cruickshank – President & CEO
Click here to read Rod’s full bio.

 

2017-10-04T09:30:06-08:00

Quarterly Winner of The Partners Group’s Personal Insurance Referral Program

Kevin B. of Gig Harbor, WA is the winner of a $100 VISA gift card for the Personal Insurance referral program at The Partners Group. Additionally, The Partners Group will be donating $230 to Dress for Success Oregon, the quarterly non-profit which receives a $10 donation per each referral received.

The mission of Dress for Success is to empower women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and the development tools to help women thrive in work and in life.

To learn more about the personal insurance referral program, click here.

2017-07-17T15:45:42-08:00

Webinar Overview Video & Presentation Now Available – Understanding Captive Alternatives for Employee Benefits

The Partners Group hosted a webinar on Wednesday, June 28th entitled “Understanding Captive Alternatives for Employee Benefits”. This webinar focused on a self-funding alternative to traditional group health options for controlling healthcare costs and reducing financial risk.

Overview:

Seminar and webinar on self-funded captive alternatives, which enable stable financing of medical costs, retention of underwriting profits and investment income, while gaining more stability and predictability in your employee benefit plans.

Fill out the form below to gain access the the webinar presentation and video.

2017-07-19T09:53:43-08:00

Are You Properly Insuring Your Wine?

If you’re a wine aficionado, you’re probably collecting and storing a significant amount of wine. However, have you considered that you might want to insure your collection? It’s important to understand what your policy covers and doesn’t cover, such as market appreciation, mechanical breakdown of your climate control system and newly acquired wine. Most policies don’t even cover wine collections, and you’ll need a separate policy or rider to protect it. Additionally, you’ll want to consider an insurance carrier that specializes in settling wine collection claims.

Click here for simple tips for protecting your wine collection.

Above: Wine Storage Bellevue facility

According to Patrick Gilroy, Owner of Wine Storage Bellevue, “Not all wine storage facilities are equal. Depending on your individual needs, here are some important factors to consider: Does your facility accept wine shipments on your behalf and store them safely for you? Is your wine accessible and available when you need it? Ask about extended hours and 7-day-a-week access. The quality of the wine’s security should match, if not exceed, the value of the collection. Be sure to ask if your wine is stored securely under lock and key, or, better yet, under surveillance. If you use a web-based cellar management tool, ask about wireless internet access where your wine is stored so you can keep your records up to date. Some places even offer a comfortable decanting area where you can sit and enjoy a glass of wine with a fellow connoisseur or wine interest group."

If you have questions or would like an initial consultation...

2017-07-06T08:48:40-08:00

Improving Health and Productivity in the Workplace

Moving towards an outcomes-based approach to wellness, with a focus on prevention

Article on Seattle Business Magazine Online

Alexa Galluzzo, Managing Consultant of Health and Productivity at The Partners Group, discusses moving towards an outcomes-based approach to wellness, with a focus on prevention.

“The right strategy for your company – knowing where your risk is and being able to implement programs with targeted interventions to address it mitigates your risk over time.” Click here to read the full article and view a helpful video.

View entire webinar video

In this webinar video we share ideas and strategies for implementing a workplace wellness program into your workplace. First we focus on the benefits of a workplace wellness program, both from the employer perspective and then also from the employee perspective. We also share some tips for focusing on prevention and talk about specific risk reduction strategies that you can implement in your workplace. Then we wrap it up with what’s next in workplace wellness.

Case Study:
We’ve highlighted a particular employer and how they went down the path of implementing a workplace risk reduction strategy in this case study.

Legal Guidelines:
Additionally we’ve invited our legal counsel, Iris Tilley from Barran Liebman Attorneys, to address legal considerations to be aware of when moving forward with a health contingent wellness program. For details around the legal requirements of incorporating a contingent outcomes based program into your workplace, click here.

Within the Employer Services Division of the Partners Group, we not only offer employee benefits, we also provide employee health and productivity consulting services, healthcare analytics, total absence management consulting services, as well as employer retirement plans.

Please […]

2017-10-04T10:27:08-08:00

Rod Cruickshank Elected as Chair to the Meridian Park Medical Foundation Board

Rod Cruickshank, President and CEO of The Partners Group, has been elected as chair to the Meridian Park Medical Foundation board of trustees during its meeting on June 1, 2017. The Foundation advocates and raises funds for Legacy Meridian Park Medical Center, part of Legacy Health – the largest local nonprofit health care provider in Oregon and Southwest Washington.

Cruickshank began his insurance career in 1984 as a sales consultant for one of the nation’s largest employee benefit brokerage firms. After working in both the Northwest and Northeast holding various positions, he returned to Portland, OR where he co-founded The Partners Group. Today The Partners Group is one of the largest independent financial and insurance services firms in the Pacific Northwest, serving more than 600 employers and well over 20,000 successful physicians, dentists and executives. He is also the founder and managing partner of C2 Solutions, comprised of six of the nation’s top independent regional benefit firms to deliver a combination of service and experience unmatched in the marketplace today.

The foundation also elected the following officers to its board of trustees during its meeting on June 1, 2017:

Rodrick B. Cruickshank, chair
Leah D. Murray, vice chair
Michael Schultz, executive director (ex officio)
Christopher A. Busby, treasurer and investment committee chair
Todd R. Duwe, secretary
Clyde Farris, M.D., trustee emeriti
Erin L. Miller, trustee emeriti
David A. Thompson, trustee emeriti

The foundation is currently raising funds in support of a Patient Care Expansion project. This $6.5 million capital campaign will increase Legacy Meridian Park’s capacity to care for the growing South Metro community with a facility that supports high-quality patient care using the latest technology and best medical practices. Legacy Meridian Park is the South Metro area’s most advanced medical […]

2017-06-30T15:32:36-08:00

New Webinar on Paid Family Leave

The Partners Group is hosting a webinar on Tuesday, July 25th from 10:00am – 11:00am PST / 11:00am – 12:00pm MST, entitled “Paid Family Leave – Creating Compliant Programs That Attract and Retain Top Talent”.

This webinar is pre-approved for 1 HR General credit and 1 PDC for SHRM BoCK credit.*
 

Register Now for Webinar

Overview:

The United States of America is one of the only developed countries lacking a mandate for income protection for employees when they need to miss work to care for themselves and their families. As a result, States and Municipalities have taken up the call to ensure protection for employees. Where State and Municipal mandates conflict with existing time off policies and practices, employers are left to sort through how to keep their programs compliant while ensuring that these programs support efforts to attract and retain the best employees.

Join Brycie Repphun from The Partners Group and Kimberly Mashburn from The Hartford as we take a look into the current landscape of Paid Family Leave.

During this webcast we will focus on the following:

  • Discuss current and evolving federal, state, and municipal regulations impacting Paid Sick Leave, Paid Parental Leave and Paid Family Leave
  • Dive into recent studies and surveys highlighting the growing trend of Employer-funded Paid Family and Paid Parental Leaves
  • Provide an overview of the process your organization can follow to ensure your Paid Time Off programs remain compliant
  • Celebrate the successes of employers who have turned mandates into opportunities to create innovative and competitive time off programs to enhance their Talent Acquisition and Retention Strategies

Presenters:

Brycie Repphun
Account Executive, Total Absence Management, The Partners Group

Brycie has spent the […]

2018-02-16T16:13:05-08:00

The Partners Group Selected as One of the 100 Best Companies to Work for in Washington

The Partners Group, a leading Northwest based provider of employee benefits, insurance and financial consulting services, is excited to be named as one of Washington’s 100 Best Companies to Work For, an award based solely on employee feedback.

TPG's Employee Team Building Day

Picture 1 of 7

Seattle Business Magazine salutes Washington’s award-winning companies who set the standard for leadership, benefits, work environment, training programs and more. The 100 Best Companies to Work For award is achieved by employees participating in an anonymous, extensive survey that focuses on company qualities such as: values, execution, leadership and culture.

2017-06-26T12:49:09-08:00

Case Study: Impact of Prevention on Employee Health Risk Reduction

An employer’s wellness journey

The results of taking a prevention based approach to managing both present and forecasted future risk— For a multi-site healthcare system based in Oregon, with 4,000 participants in their wellness program.

“Each year we saw exponential health improvement in biometric values as a result of workplace wellness strategies and clinical resources available through the health plan and provider network.”

Issues:

The employer experienced spikes in their healthcare costs early on. They took many of the traditional tactical approaches to managing cost increases including renegotiating contracts, moving from Carrier A to Carrier B to save money, decreasing benefits for employees in the current health plan structure, and increasing contribution. Unfortunately, those traditional tactics don’t bend the trend over the long term. The only sustainable and results driven strategy that bends trend is addressing the health of the population and improving health performance and quality of life. As a result, future healthcare consumerism is changed for the good as members understand how to manage their health risks and live healthier, more productive lives.

“While traditional tactics result in short term savings, this employer was struggling to balance employee satisfaction while providing competitive benefits. They knew something had to change.”

Strategies for Resolution:

In 2012, the Partners Group was hired to lead a paradigm shift in how this employer 1) addressed member health and 2) positively affected and controlled future healthcare costs. The Partners Group implemented our Engaged! Strategy. The hallmark of this strategy is creating an environment wherein the employer and the employee share in the responsibility and accountability for health improvement.

The Engaged! Strategy includes health risk assessments and biometric screenings to obtain baseline population health data. This information is combined with claims data, when available, which leads to identifying where known […]

2017-08-02T05:14:26-08:00

Prescription for a Cure: How to Manage Rising Health Insurance Costs

Featuring The Partners Group, Harsch Investment Properties and SAIF Corporation


Click image to view video. Double click for larger video.

Oregon Business Magazine hosts monthly panel discussions on topical issues. These forums provide another platform to engage with readers. They bring people in the community together to network and share insights and experiences about business and public policy issues.

This forum focused on exploring concrete strategies for employers looking to contain costs and improve care. According to Linda Baker, Editor of Oregon Business Magazine, “The business of healthcare is notoriously complex. It is also steeped in uncertainty, especially now as we wait to see what happens with the latest healthcare bill, the revamped American Healthcare and Recovery Act.”

Read a review of the forum published by the Oregon Business Magazine by clicking here.

Outline:

Moderator:
Linda Baker, Editor of Oregon Business Magazine

Panelists:
Rojita Raghubansh, Senior Vice President of Human Resources and Risk Management at Harsch Investment Properties. Prior to joining Harsch, Rojita was the director of human resources for a senior housing company focused on independent living, assisted living, and memory care. Rojita has extensive experience in healthcare, wellness programs, strategic planning, leadership development, succession planning and employee relations.

Sarah Friend, Executive Vice President at The Partners […]

2017-07-11T10:04:47-08:00

New Seminar and Webinar on Understanding Captive Alternatives for Employee Benefits

The Partners Group is hosting a new seminar and webinar on Wednesday, June 28th. The title is “Understanding Captive Alternatives for Employee Benefits”. The focus will be a self-funding alternative to traditional group health options for controlling healthcare costs and reducing financial risk.

 SEMINAR & WEBINAR APPROVED FOR 1 HR & 1 SHRM PDC CREDIT* 

Click image to view video. Double click for larger video.

Overview:

Join us for an engaging seminar/webinar on self-funded captive alternatives, which enable stable financing of medical costs, retention of underwriting profits and investment income, while gaining more stability and predictability in your employee benefit plans.

Organizations who should attend:

  • Have 50-500 enrolled employees on their health plan
  • Are committed to wellness and cost containment
  • Understand “risk for reward”
  • Desire more control and stability
  • Have an entrepreneurial spirit
  • Are financially secure
  • Offer health insurance on a fully-insured basis

Don’t miss this informative and innovative webinar!

Presented in conjunction with C2 Solutions, industry experts in employee benefits solutions, providing national strength at a local level with innovative cutting edge products and services.

 Seminar: 
Wednesday, June 28th

Breakfast:
7:30am – 8:00am PST

Program:
8:00am – 9:30am PST

Where:
OMEF Center
11740 SW 68th Parkway, First Floor
Portland, OR 97223

RSVP Now for Seminar

 Webinar: 
Wednesday, June 28th

Time:
10:30am – 11:30am PST
11:30am – 12:30pm MST

Register Now for Webinar

* HR Certification Institute® (HRCI®) pre-approved this program for 1 HR (General) credit hour towards a PHR™, PHR®, PHRca®, SPHR®, GPHR®, PHRi™ and SPHRi™ recertification.

The Partners Group is recognized by SHRM to offer SHRM-CP or SHRMSCP professional development credits (PDCs). This program is valid for 1 PDC. For more information […]

2017-06-19T12:20:20-08:00

Ensure Your Board Directors & Officers are Adequately Covered from Unexpected Lawsuits

Quick Tips Video & Article from The Partners Group Commercial Insurance Division


Click image to view video.  Double click for larger view

Understand your risk & liability whether you are already on a board of directors or considering joining one. It’s vital to understand that directors and officers can be held personally liable for costs directly related to claims made against them. This video covers quick tips on better ways to assure you’re adequately protecting the personal assets of your directors and officers. Read the full article on the Seattle Business Magazine’s website by clicking here.

Click to view the article as published in Seattle Business Magazine.

The Partners Group can provide a free risk assessment of your management liability policies, and even present those findings in person to your board. For more information contact us.

 

 

 

Paul Vlcek, The Partners Group Commercial Insurance Division


View Paul’s biography

www.thepartnersgroup.com | email: communications@thepartnersgroup.com | 877-455-5640

 

2018-01-28T08:05:26-08:00

Join TPG at the Oregon Business Magazine’s Breakfast Series “Hot Topics/Cool Talks”

Prescription for a Cure: How to Manage Rising Health Insurance Costs
Forum features The Partners Group and our employer clients who will discuss real life case examples

Buy a Ticket

Tuesday, May 23rd, 2017
7:30 AM to 9:00 AM (PDT)

Join us for the Oregon Business’ breakfast series “Hot Topics/Cool Talks.” The panelists will discuss how to manage rising health insurance costs.

The health care policy landscape is steeped in uncertainty, and employer insurance costs continue to climb. Yet high quality health care benefits packages rank at the top of the list for companies aiming to recruit and retain top talent.

Employers need to pay attention to new health care benefits innovations while taking advantage of proven strategies to reduce expenses.

Join Oregon Business and the Partners Group for a lively and informative conversation about how to boost employee wellness while controlling and even reducing health care benefits costs.

Our expert panelists will discuss the following topics:

  • Latest updates to the Affordable Care Act and how the law affects employers’ abilities to manage health care pricing
  • The transition from fully insured to self-funded plans and how that strategy saves money
  • How employers can implement multifaceted wellness programs aimed at improving employees’ health and reducing health costs over the long term.
  • Pharmacy benefit management strategies
  • Targeted strategies for small and large employers

Location: The Benson Hotel • 309 SW Broadway • Portland, OR 97205


Moderator:

  • Linda Baker, Editor, Oregon Business Magazine

Panelists:

  • Renae Coombs, Human Resources Manager, SAIF Corporation
  • Sarah Friend, Employee Benefits Consultant, The Partners Group
  • Rojita Raghubansh, Senior Vice President of Human Resources & Rick Management, Harsch Investment Properties

For more information or to buy a ticket, click here.

2017-05-10T09:49:49-08:00

Improving Health & Productivity in the Workplace Webinar Video

The Partners Group hosted a webinar on Thursday, April 27th entitled “Improving Health & Productivity in the Workplace”. This webinar focused on creating an outcomes based approach to wellness with a strong focus on prevention to drive positive health outcomes…adding up to a healthier and more productive workplace.

Video:

Double click on the video to make it larger.

Presentation:


Click on the presentation to go to a downloadable PDF version.

Wellness Program Compliance Flow Chart:
Click to download PDF

Webinar Overview:

The costs associated with lifestyle-related health problems have been estimated to account for more than a third of the $2.4 trillion that the United States spends on health care annually.

“You can’t quantify or measure the heart attack that DIDN’T happen, but you can prevent the heart attack.”

Making the leap from participation based to outcomes based should not be taken lightly.

Chronic diseases, including heart disease, cancer, and diabetes, are the leading causes of death and disability in the United States. They are pervasive, costly, and, in many cases, either preventable or manageable through the combined application of medical science and healthy lifestyles. Nearly fifty to eighty percent of all diseases are linked to the behavior choices we make.

Specialized industry experts covered:

  • Methods for engaging your leadership and workforce in a more preventive and outcomes driven approach to creating a culture of wellness in your workplace.
  • The process of transitioning from a participation to a largely outcomes based wellness program including human management strategies for getting people to take […]
2017-06-23T11:30:27-08:00

Webinar Overview Video & Presentation Now Available – Improving Health & Productivity in the Workplace

The Partners Group hosted a webinar on Thursday, April 27th entitled “Improving Health & Productivity in the Workplace”. This webinar focused on creating an outcomes based approach to wellness with a strong focus on prevention to drive positive health outcomes…adding up to a healthier and more productive workplace.

Webinar Overview:

The costs associated with lifestyle-related health problems have been estimated to account for more than a third of the $2.4 trillion that the United States spends on health care annually.

Fill out the form below to gain access the the webinar presentation and video.

2017-06-23T11:30:09-08:00

New Webinar on Improving Health & Productivity in the Workplace

The Partners Group is hosting a webinar on Thursday, April 27th from 9:00am – 10:00am PST/10:00am – 11:00am MST, entitled “Improving Health & Productivity in the Workplace".

This webinar will focus on creating an outcomes based approach to wellness with a strong focus on prevention to drive positive health outcomes…adding up to a healthier and more productive workplace.

This webinar is pre-approved for 1 HR General credit and 1 PDC for SHRM BoCK credit.*

 

2017-04-25T14:13:45-08:00

Employee Benefits

The Employee Benefits Division of The Partners Group serves the employee benefit needs of over 500 West Coast employers, with offices in Portland, Lake Oswego, and Bend, OR; Bellevue, WA; and Bozeman MT. Our benefits consulting team specializes in providing a highly-consultative approach coupled with problem-solving wellness analytics, to help employers reduce healthcare costs, improve employee health, and create long-term health plan stability.

Business Consulting

The Business Consulting Division of The Partners Group is dedicated to consulting with healthcare systems and jumbo employers to manage the health and well being of their employees, families, and communities. Our focus is to provide an innovative, solution-oriented service that capitalizes on data to pinpoint potential problems. Whether it be uncovering potential sources of escalating healthcare costs, or other anomalies in data, this service provides endless, problem-solving advantages to a variety of industries.

Commercial Insurance

The Partners Group Commercial Insurance Division manages the business risks for hundreds of employers. We provide an unmatched depth and breadth in commercial insurance and risk management services combined with extraordinary people who possess an unusual ability to connect on a personal level. We work hard to understand the unique risks and exposures of your business, and identify the solutions to provide the right coverage for the right price. As an independent company The Partners Group can tailor solutions to work specifically for you, even creating new policies and programs, if that’s what you need.

Private Client Services

The Partners Group Private Client Services Division advises business owners and high income shareholder groups comprising just over 3,200 successful individuals, families and medical professionals on investment services, retirement planning, and personal insurance. We’ve been in business for over 30 years as a privately held company based in the Northwest, and we’re here to stay. Additionally, we are not tied to products and plans. We provide various platforms and a multitude of options to fit your needs, which can change over time as your life changes. When you work with TPG Private Client Services, you’re dealing with the shareholders of this firm, and we are honored to play a role your life, your family’s lives, and your next generation’s lives.