BEST PRACTICES: How Fred Beans Automotive Group Controls Healthcare Costs

A staff member from each Fred Beans store has been selected to become the on-site Healthy Living Coordinator for that store with whom Volm works and to whom employees can ask questions.

Employees also receive annual healthy lifestyle activity cards that encourage participation in activities such as health fairs and workouts. Depending on quarterly attendance, staff members can earn up to $ 150 per year, Volm said. Employees can also win a $ 10 gift card at a Wawa convenience store to participate in a 30-day fitness challenge. Each month, the group shares an update on employee health, and quarterly Fred’s Healthy BeansTalk newsletters are mailed to employees’ homes.

Volm also created 10-minute exercise videos to encourage employee movement at individualized levels and pace.

“We have employees sitting at desks, we have employees standing all day, [and] we have employees working with their hands all day, ”she said.

Fred Beans’ TV programming that airs in group venues features work birthdays and auto manufacturer news, interspersed with yoga classes, health reminders, and information about the benefits of certain foods.

“It’s in your face all the time,” Gilbert said.

There are also financial incentives for employees to visit doctors and dentists and get cancer screenings.

Employees who get a free annual networked medical exam and complete certain screenings are given a credit of $ 140 per month towards the cost of their health insurance, Gilbert said.

Gilbert said having a wellness coordinator is a unique benefit and a tool for recruiting and retaining employees for the group, which has 32 locations, including 21 dealerships and a large parts warehouse. The company has been named one of the Philadelphia Business Journal The Healthiest Employers of 2021 in the Greater Philadelphia Area.

Fred Beans, who sold 13,377 new vehicles and 11,810 used vehicles last year and plans to sell 31,000 combined vehicles in 2021, switched to a self-insured health plan about four years ago. Gilbert said she keeps an eye on employee participation in the healthy living program and the group’s insurance costs.
“Every year I have an increase in our health insurance,” Gilbert said. “But the healthier we are, the more [less] my increase is. “

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