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How mobile technology is helping businesses
(StatePoint) If you run a small business, you know that there is almost always work to be done. However, much of your time may be spent on tasks that you didn’t foresee before you opened shop. Indeed, up to 25 percent of a business owner’s time can be consumed by human resources and benefits administration, according to the Small Business Administration.
    Luckily for those who built a business to follow their passions, not to do paperwork, new mobile technology can help save employers’ time, make employees’ lives easier and attract great staff.
  For example, when Michael Kerins, founder of Robust Wealth, a New Jersey-based provider of financial management software and services, began offering health benefits to his staff, he didn’t anticipate the amount of time required to process paperwork and answer questions from employees.
    “Too much of my time was tied up filling out paperwork, updating records and helping employees find information,” says Kerins, who switched to using Zenefits, an online, all-in-one platform that includes HR, benefits administration and payroll.
     One benefit Kerins quickly realized was time-savings, as employees had access to all of their HR and benefits information in one place -- online and through mobile apps.
     “Employees can now fill out their own paperwork online, upload necessary documents, and make their own updates when things change. It makes onboarding and benefits administration ridiculously easy and paperless. I never see the forms, but I can see when they have been completed,” says Kerins. He also quickly noticed that his employees appreciate more control over their personal information and the ability to access all of their HR and benefits information in one place, including through their mobile phones.
     According to Jim Lundy, principal analyst with Aragon Research, using mobile technology to run a business is not just a convenience, it’s becoming something of a necessity.
     “Mobile is now critical in the workplace, as this is how the younger generations expect to work,” Lundy says, “Companies need to adapt or risk missing out on key talent.”
     Other mobile apps offer employers and their staff opportunities to streamline project management, email marketing campaigns and more.
  “Mobile apps should not only help people access information, but allow them to take actions and move things forward,” Lundy added. “Over the next few years, we predict mobile devices will become the primary computing device for a significant percentage of workers.”

(StatePoint) After the work day is over and the long list of household chores is completed, there are important things young adults want to do with their free time. Whether it’s gut-busting hilarity at the new comedy club or sweating out those toxins at the hottest yoga class in town, these activities cost money. However, when the unexpected happens and you’re faced with going to the hospital, there is a chance your finances will be impacted.
    Today, the average cost of a hospital stay is $11,000, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, and standard health insurance plans may leave you on the hook for unexpected medical expenses. Having to pay for even a sliver of that cost could throw your budget for a loop, and in many cases, the first casualties of a budget cut are the stress-reducing, mood-boosting, quality-of-life activities.
     With that in mind, would you be willing to give up the following things if an unexpected medical event led to a pile of bills from a hospital visit?
1. Weekly date night, girls’ night or any night out with friends. Are you afraid of missing out on fun with friends and loved ones? Well, if you are trying to pay a hospital bill, you just might suffer from FOMO trying to pay out-of-pocket expenses that are putting a strain on finances.
2. The gym membership. Working out makes you feel your best and can potentially stave off illness. Why side-step your fitness goals following an unexpected hospitalization because of finances? Once you are back on your feet, medical bills shouldn’t put you behind. Insurance like Aflac’s offers flexible coverage that can help protect income for such daily expenses.
3. Streaming video services. Since cutting the cord, you have been able to keep up with the latest genius programming online. Even though a membership with various streaming video services doesn’t seem like a lot of money, having to pay for a broken arm or unexpected surgery can mean that you need to cut inessential expenses – including your ability to binge watch the latest show.
4. Those daily lattes. A daily latte can add up to more than $1,000 a year, according to an employee survey on payroll tax and spending habits by Accounting Principals. While many people believe that major medical coverage is enough, high-deductible health plans are on the rise, which could leave you paying $1,000 or more before your coverage kicks in to help. Should that mean saying goodbye to the daily dose of caffeine that gets you through your workday?
  To help keep your lifestyle healthy, consider supplemental hospital indemnity insurance, such as plans offered by Aflac. To learn more, visit aflac.com/hospital.
  For many people, it is already hard enough to budget for everyday activities and expenses, let alone cover the costs of an unexpected hospitalization. Even if you are young and healthy, it’s important to prepare for whatever life may throw your way.


Giving up your favorite activites to pay medical bills