case study â??Benefits for Part-Time Workersâ? . Then answer the following questions:
What are some factors that Alan should consider when determining whether to offer benefits to part-time workers?
Do you think the firm should offer benefits to part-time workers? If yes, should it offer paid time off, the 401(k) plan, and health insurance, or only one or two of the benefits? Explain your recommendation.
Refer to the Discussion Rubric for directions on completing these discussions.
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Benefits for Part-Time Workers
With just under 100 employees, Jackson, Smith and Henderson CPA (JSH) is considered one of the
fastest growing certified public accounting (CPA) firms in the area. Alan Jones was recently hired as
the director of human resources and has many challenges ahead of him as he works to formalize the
human resource practices of the firm.
As the benefit open enrollment period is approaching quickly, his first job is to review the benefit
offerings of the firm to ensure that JSH is competitive with other area firms. Beyond the legally
required benefits, the firm currently offers a fairly basic benefit package including health care
insurance, a 401(k) plan, vacation days, and sick days.
Currently, all employees are full-time, and all employees are eligible for benefits. However, two
employees have recently requested part-time schedules. Further, in order to meet future unique
staffing needs, the firm is considering hiring part-time workers in several departments, including
CPAs. Therefore, Alan must make a recommendation to the company’s board of directors on
whether or not they should extend the benefits to part-time workers.
A recent compensation survey of businesses in the local geographic area includes information about
benefits. The survey reports that about 90 percent of companies in the area offer time off benefits to
part-time employees, but only 40 percent offer health care insurance, and 15 percent offer a
retirement savings plan. A national survey of CPA firms showed a different picture for part-time
workers: 95 percent of firms reported time off offerings, 75 percent offered health care insurance,
and 67 percent offered retirement benefits to part-time workers.
The job market for talented CPAs is competitive and Alan knows that they will need to hire both fulltime and part-time CPAs in the future. Alan’s initial reaction is that they need to offer all benefits to
both full-time and part-time workers in order to be competitive with other CPA firms. However, the
costs to do so are significant. The current benefits package is approximately 30 percent of the total
compensation package for full-time workers. While time off benefits and 401(k) contributions for parttime workers would be pro-rated based on the number of hours each employee works, offering
health care insurance is a fixed cost. That is, the firm must pay the same to cover a part-time worker
as a full-time worker. As a result, benefit costs could potentially approach nearly 50 percent of the
total compensation for part-time employees. Part of this cost could be offset by asking part-time
workers to pay a higher percentage of the premium, but the cost would still be significant. Alan must
balance recruiting needs against a tight budget, and he is concerned about the right path to take.
What are some factors that Alan should consider when determining
whether to offer benefits to part-time workers?
Do you think the firm should offer benefits to part-time workers? If yes,
should it offer paid time off, the 401(k) plan, and health insurance, or only
one or two of the benefits? Explain your recommendation.
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