Looking for the right international insurance policy? Here are 9 to consider

9 international policies to consider

If you’re a company with employees spread across different countries, you might be wondering which international insurance policy or related benefits you should provide. Whether you have global offices, expat workers or a team of far-flung remote employees; it’s far easier to support them centrally rather than via separate policies and points of contact.

The net benefit of implementing everything within one policy is less paperwork and reduced admin processes for HR teams – plus, a more cohesive offering for employees. Surveys show that over a third of businesses are increasing the number of international remote workers unaffiliated to a local office.

In this context, offering attractive and easy-to-administer benefits will be key to winning the battle for talent.

This blog post reveals:

  • The top 9 international insurance policies & related services
  • International Health Insurance trends and price ranges
  • 4 key benefits of investing in a single international scheme vs separate local schemes

If you’d like one-to-one expert assistance call +44 (0)1273 974149 or use the chatbox on the right.


 

9 international insurance policies and services to consider

1. International Business Health Insurance:

What does it do?

Gives your employees access to private healthcare, wherever they are in the world. A specific short-term policy also exists for employees working abroad for between one and 12 months.

Why provide it?

Fulfils your duty of care to employees all over the world, gives them the medical support they need when they need it, reduces the chances of a failed expat assignment, and can also help diagnose problems before they occur thereby reducing absenteeism.

Learn more about International Business Health Insurance

2. International Group Life Insurance

What does it do?

Provides financial support to a team member’s loved-ones in the event of their death – wherever they are in the world.

Why provide it?

Reassures employees that their family is looked after should the worst happen. It’s also a relatively low-cost international insurance policy.

Learn more about International Group Life Insurance

3. International Group Income Protection

What does it do?

It provides financial support to an employee should they fall ill, wherever they are in the world. Essentially, it’s a form of sick pay.

Why offer it?

Rather than the business having to foot the bill for staff absence, the insurance policy covers it – avoiding a potential financial hit. For the staff member, it provides essential financial support. Income Protection is currently ranking as the most desired benefit in the post-pandemic era.

Learn more about International Group Income Protection

Looking for independent and impartial advice on international insurance policies and other benefits? Our team of expert advisors will be happy to answer all your questions. Call us on +44 (0)1273 974149 or use the chatbox on the right.

4. International Group Critical Illness

What does it do?

Provides financial support to your international workforce in the event of a serious illness or, in some policies, if they suffer a disability.

Why offer it?

A serious debilitating illness is a major life event and many would struggle to support themselves or their families in the absence of a regular income. This international insurance policy comes to the rescue by providing support when it’s needed most.

Learn more about International Group Critical Illness

5. International Employee Assistance Programmes

What does it do?

While it’s not strictly an international insurance policy, it’s an important related service often included with a policy. An IEAP is a digital platform which provides practical health and wellbeing support to employees, either via a mobile or desktop app. Counselling services, financial advice, and stress support are among the services offered.

Why offer it?

Multi-lingual support means it’s easy to provide everyday wellbeing support to your global teams. In essence, it helps them help themselves, empowering them with the tools required to be happier, healthier and more at ease with whatever life and work throws at them. They are much vaunted for their ability to reduce staff sickness absence rates.

Learn more about International Employee Assistance Programmes

6. Group Travel Insurance

What does it do?

Provides insurance coverage for groups of employees travelling abroad, covering them for things such as: accidents, illnesses, lost possessions and travel cancellations.

Why offer it?

Particularly useful if you have teams travelling abroad for business trips. A comprehensive policy can massively reduce the burden on HR if employees’ get into difficulty, providing rapid support and guidance for all the issues covered within the policy. You might also be able to get travel insurance with Covid cover.

Learn more Group Travel Insurance

7. Pre-Assignment Screening

What does it do?

Provides a series of checks designed to assess an employee’s suitability for working overseas. Health screening, personal evaluation, pre-trip preparation and family support is often included.

Why offer it?

The failure rate of expat assignments can be quite high if not managed appropriately. Pre-assignment screening maximises the chances of a successful assignment by checking the psychological and physical wellbeing of the employee before they leave, and ensure that every potential challenge is considered or negated in advance.

Learn more about Pre-Assignment Screening

8. Kidnap & Ransom Insurance

What does it do?

It supports a business in the event of an employee’s kidnap or hostage. It covers consultancy costs (hostage negotiators, for example), care expenses (physical & mental), legal costs and/or employee replacement costs.

Why offer it?

If your business operates in a part of the world prone to such incidents, or you have high net worth individuals, then Kidnap & Ransom Insurance may be advisable. It helps protect both employee and business alike, both during and after the incident. This international insurance policy is often overlooked by businesses.

Learn more about Kidnap & Ransom Insurance

9. Cultural training

What does it do?

It’s a specific form of workplace training which essentially equips people (expats, multi-national workplaces and/or global leadership teams), with the knowledge and skills to communicate effectively across different countries and cultures, free of misunderstanding or cultural faux pas.

Why offer it?

Ultimately, improved communication leads to improved team dynamics – driving productivity and bolstering team morale.

Learn more about Cultural Training


 

International Health Insurance trends and price ranges

Global health insurance provider, APRIL International, were happy to share with us some of the current trends they are witnessing. With over 30 years of experience and operations globally covering more than 150,000 insured members in 180 countries around the world, this is a market they know well.

      • Average International Business Health Insurance premiums: An employer can expect to pay on average £1,500 – £2,500 annual premium per employee but of course this can vary depending on the age, location and level of benefit required. For a basic Inpatient only policy with APRIL International we can expect an annual premium of around £1,200.
      • Average age range: The average age of an employee we typically see for an SME group is 35-40 years.
      • Percentage of ‘new to market’ business: 20-30% of group enquiries are businesses which have not purchased a policy previously. 70-80% are existing clients looking for an alternate offer to their renewal.
      • Mental health provisions are in demand: Over the last 5 years in general there has been a real emphasis on mental health awareness and therefore almost all brokers and customers query the cover in relation to this aspect.

 

In a post Covid world, health insurance for global employees is likely to become ever more important. Global insurance providers such as APRIL International offer a route through the complexities of accommodating this risk.


 

4 practical benefits of investing in single international insurance policies

A single international employee benefits scheme provides several advantages over domestic, single country schemes:

  1. Consistency:

International benefit schemes provide a consistent range of benefits and support for all staff across multiple countries creating simplicity and ease of administration.

Even if an employee moves from one country to another, the scheme can be designed to move with them. This saves the trouble (and cost) of removing an employee from a pre-existing policy and enrolling them onto a new one.

  1. Generous terms

When you have multiple employees under one policy, you can gain improved terms and conditions. This is the typical ‘bulk buy’ effect. For example, it’s possible to get Medical History Disregarded underwriting on an International Health Insurance plan – this means an individual’s previous medical conditions are overlooked in the pricing and/or terms of the policy. A single national policy is unlikely to offer such generous terms.

  1. Centralised and simplified

Hundreds of HR hours can be saved by bringing together a range of insurance schemes and perks in one place. Different languages, renewal dates, currencies and points of contact can be brought into a centrally managed system.

“Having one central point of contact to administer a group’s international healthcare cover across time zones and languages is costly, so if this burden can be borne by the insurer, the client will save valuable resource,” said Adam Vogt, Sales Director from APRIL International. “Equally, having clearly defined procedures and benefits centrally on a company intranet can ensure all have access and the rules and policy operation are made easier.”

  1. Superior quality

Many international insurance policies will provide more extensive levels of cover than domestic policies. This is particularly true of global health insurance, where individuals may have access to extra services such as: maternity care, private GP visits, preventative health screening, dental, optical, wellbeing and medical evacuation.


Would you like to outsource the workload?

Many companies choose to utilise an insurance broker when seeking out an international insurance policy. A good broker can alleviate the strain on HR by doing all the legwork involved in sourcing and implemeting a scheme.

Engage Health Group is a broker fully independent of any insurance provider. That means we can offer impartial advice free of charge and obligation.

Tel: +44 (0)1273 974419 or use the chatbox on the right.

 

Mel Dixon

Mel Dixon

Experienced freelance writer, PR practitioner and content strategist who has written extensively on issues affecting the business community.

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