(Very) small business, how best to offer benefits to first employees?
April 1, 2013 2:56 PM   Subscribe

We're about to hire our first few full time folks, and I want to offer them insurance and potentially retirement. Finding a reliable broker (in NYC) seems daunting, so I'm hoping for some advice!

Not sure if anyone here has been down this road, but if you have, is there a good site to start at? Most of the ones that come up on Google search feel... sketchy? Is there such thing as a person who can help us set up both the insurance and the retirement and maybe even payroll too? Or it better to look for the 3 things in different places?

Given I'm looking at hiring 2-3 people total this year, hiring an HR department isn't really in the cards. So any advice would be greatly appreciated.
posted by malphigian to Work & Money (9 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
The five-person company I work for uses Execustaff HR; my last company was about fifty people and used Ambrose Employer Group. Both of them have been pleasant to deal with as an employee, although I have no idea what they are like from the employer's end.
posted by novalis_dt at 3:02 PM on April 1, 2013

A recent startup is targeting this space. Haven't used them myself, but I've heard some good things from other startups using them: Zenefits
posted by heliostatic at 3:06 PM on April 1, 2013

I've worked for (small) companies that use Ambrose and TriNet. Both have been great from an employee perspective -- I've never heard complaints about the employer side of things either.
posted by wrok at 3:07 PM on April 1, 2013

I've worked for small companies that outsource this stuff too, one to Administaff and one to TriNet. They were both pretty seamless and worked well for both employees and employers, but I liked TriNet a little better.
posted by bedhead at 3:10 PM on April 1, 2013

Thirding Trinet, it works well for our 10 person setup, we've used them since just 2 employees.
posted by Long Way To Go at 3:22 PM on April 1, 2013

Zenefits looks awesome, but it told me (after I signed up) that it's only available in California.
posted by thejoshu at 3:27 PM on April 1, 2013

You might ask your accountant who they recommend, since they probably deal with other small businesses in similar spots.

I would be wary of combining all three into one vendor. But I would definitely outsource your payroll, because they will be able to help you with all the reporting requirements and withholding and all that. As for insurance, find a good broker who works with multiple companies and seek their advice. For retirement, talk to one of the retail brokerage houses, like Schwab or Merrill Lynch or someone like that. Or, talk to your business's bank and see if they have an IRA or Roth IRA option that you could offer as a benefit to your employees. You cover the costs of starting up and maintaining the account, they fill it with their own money.
posted by gjc at 3:43 PM on April 1, 2013

I'm pretty sure the main payroll vendors like ADP also do benefits. Any local insurance agent that focuses on working with small businesses can also help.
posted by COD at 5:44 PM on April 1, 2013

We use Insperity where I work.
posted by Runes at 10:39 AM on April 2, 2013

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