When it comes to finding a Pharmacy Benefits Manager (PBM) to work with, it can be difficult to narrow down your choices. On the surface, it might not seem like PBMs differ from each other all that much – they all serve to manage your company’s pharmacy benefits. But just like the services offered by health insurers vary, so too do the services offered by PBMs. And one often overlooked factor that contributes to this service is the company’s ownership. In this article, we’re going to look at employee-owned companies and the differences you’ll notice when working with one.
At its most basic level, an employee-owned company is exactly like what it sounds – a company owned by its employees. But how much of the company is owned by employees and which employees have a stake in ownership varies. The main type of employee-owned company is called an employee stock ownership plan (ESOP). The amount of employee ownership can vary within an ESOP, but fully-owned companies are 100% owned by their employees. There are over 6,000 ESOPs in the United States, and around 10% of the US workforce is employed by an ESOP.
There are many advantages to an ESOP, and those benefits touch every part of the organization. From a broad perspective, ESOPs align company values with individual values. The goals of the company become the goal of the employee. On an individual level, employees at ESOPs are efficient and more fulfilled because they have a vested interest in the company’s growth. Whether it’s on an individual or broad level, when you interact with an ESOP, you’ll often find employees that strike the sought-after balance of hard-working and happy.
There’s a lot of great information out there about why an ESOP is a great choice for a company, but it’s harder to find guidance on what you can expect when working with an ESOP. So, we’re going to take this discussion one step further and outline the differences you’ll notice when working with an employee-owned company vs. other types of ownerships.
As you can see, when you’re choosing the vendors and agencies your company will work with, looking for ESOPs is a wise choice. But how does that translate specifically to PBMs? The search for the right PBM can be tricky. The intricacies can often be overlooked, and the overwhelming choices can make it easy to just choose out of convenience rather than doing some more in-depth research.
But taking the time to consider who owns a PBM can greatly affect your experience. Many PBMs answer to Wall Street and ownership groups with vested interests in other corporations. This can create enormous amounts of red tape and conflicting interest. The world of pharmacy benefits is inherently complex – full of regulations and frequently changing laws and procedures. You need a PBM who is willing and able to develop a long-term, high-touch relationship with you, so that the complexity of the changing prescription benefits environment doesn’t complicate how your PBM navigates your company’s individual needs.
Working with an employee-owned PBM means you partner directly with the owner of the company. Together, you can work to find a solution that fits the exact needs of your company, and you won’t be thrown around from department to department or wait on endless holds to figure out how changing regulations affect your company’s benefit offerings.
ProAct, Inc. is the largest employee-owned PBM in the country. We pride ourselves on being an industry leader, who can never be bought or sold. When you work with us, you’ll be partnering with a company who has a proven history of being adaptable to the changing pharmacy environment and your individual needs. We don’t use vendors or outsource our mail order and specialty pharmacies; they are wholly owned by us. So, if you want to experience what it’s like to partner with a 100% employee-owned PBM and see the difference for yourself, reach out to us at 888.254.3552 or online.