As employer groups concentrate on human resource and other employee benefits strategies, one of the decisions many are mulling is what their involvement will be in the employee benefits process in the future.A recent survey by Washington, D.C.-based Watson Wyatt reveals that some employers are talking about getting out of the healthcare game altogether and giving their employees lump sums to go purchase their own care-maybe through Web sites that aggregate individual buying power.

This course of action would have great implications not only on employees and the autonomy it would provide them, but on the broker community, which works with employer groups to pinpoint the right benefits package to fit their needs. If more employers wash their hands of the process-and individuals independently select their coverage-brokers could be squeezed out.

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