- Look for a provider that is satisfied with selling only their Affordable Care Act compliance and year-end reporting tool. Some providers require companies to purchase payroll services, benefit administration services, or other human resource management services in addition to their ACA compliance and reporting software.
- Will the system provide the information that enables you to monitor the actual hours worked by variable hour employees who are trending toward becoming benefit eligible? Some businesses want to ensure variable hour employees, who typically were not offered benefits, do not become benefit eligible under the Affordable Care Act.
- Look for a system that can handle common ownership of multiple businesses. Under ACA multiple businesses with common ownership need combined reporting. If your business is one of a group of businesses with common ownership, your year-end reporting requirements are more complicated and need to be addressed differently.
- When managing Affordable Care Act issues on an ongoing basis it is helpful to have certain information highlighted in real-time. Find a system that offers dashboard reporting that will give you a quick and clear view of ACA information that requires action.
- To be compliant, your business needs to offer health benefits that are affordable based on a specific formula detailed in the Affordable Care Act. You need a system that enables you to enter specific data about your health plans and then automatically calculate your plan's affordability based an insured employee’s wages and actual medical insurance payroll deductions. Plus you want a system that will clearly highlight problems at the employee level so that you may make the appropriate changes.
- If your health insurance plan is a self-funded plan, the employee’s year-end 1095C will need to include dependant information. Some ACA compliance and reporting systems include an employee self-service web portal that will enable the employee to provide dependant data electronically for a benefits administrator to easily approve the data and make it part of the employee’s record and ultimately a part of the appropriate 1095C.
- Most standalone Affordable Care Act compliance and year-end reporting systems will enable the user to import data from other systems using Excel spreadsheets or CSV files. This is acceptable, however some providers are willing to create custom processes that will automate data imports creating a lot of time and money saving efficiencies.
- Creating the appropriate ACA measurement periods for your business is critical. A good Affordable Care Act tool will enable a business to work with their benefit broker and HR professional to try different scenarios in order to determine the one that best fits the company’s goals.
- Some businesses will need to create multiple measurement periods to accommodate different groups of employees. Find an Affordable Care Act compliance and year-end reporting tool that will enable easy construction of the measurement periods and an easy way of assigning each to the appropriate group of employees.
- Missing pieces of employee information can complicate the ACA year-end reporting process. Look for an Affordable Care Act tool that will highlight employees with incomplete data, and indicate what is missing.