When companies are looking for benefit plans for their employees, it’s easy to get lost in the maze of technical jargon, projections, introduction rates, and paperwork. With CHS Benefits Consulting Group, however, the process starts and continues with personal interaction, customized plans, and someone on your side every step of the way.
Carl H. Shields founded CHS Benefits after a 30-year career with Canada Life’s group division. He operated as an independent broker from 1994 to 2008, and was then joined by his son, Graham Shields, who had run his own business for 16 years. Leslie Gauchier, Carl’s daughter, joined the company in 2015.
“We are a family consulting firm dedicated to working with employers and their employees on a hands-on personal basis,” says Carl. “CHS has grown rapidly over the years and we are pleased to work with companies and organizations ranging in size from two to 500 employees. We have worked with a number of our clients for more than 25 years.”
Companies that provide benefit plans enjoy healthier, happier employees. Having the means to take care of their physical and mental wellbeing means more productive staff.
“Employers benefit by having a group plan because their employees don’t have to worry about what happens if they or a family member becomes sick or disabled,” notes Carl.
As Alberta continues to face skilled labour shortages, employee retention is more important than ever. Group plans are important tools in attracting and retaining top talent. CHS Benefits also provides group savings plans, enabling employees to feel much more optimistic about their financial futures.
The challenge in providing group benefits is that no two companies are the same. CHS rises to this challenge every day by customizing plans among their product offerings of life, disability, critical illness, health and dental insurance; registered pension plans, RRSPs, and TFSAs.
In addition to scalable plans, CHS Benefits offers something invaluable: product knowledge. Carl, Graham and Leslie know their product offerings inside out, and they ensure that each client fully understands their benefits packages. There are no surprises when a claim is made; clients have complete confidence in their plan and their plan provider.
To truly understand the needs of each company’s long-term goals, and to accommodate for growth, succession, and all the other changes that come with company ownership, Carl, Graham, and Leslie work one-on-one with their clients. There are no middle-managers or assistants. Just personal interaction to make sure each client gets the best benefit plan for the employer and the employees.
Being such an agile firm certainly has its advantages. While smaller companies of two to five employees, or companies with primarily part-time employees often struggle to find group coverage through large branded agencies, CHS Benefits is happy to design plans for companies of any size.
“We are able to offer this high level of service because we work so well together as a family operation,” smiles Carl. “The most rewarding thing for me is the fact that I can work with my son and daughter everyday, and that the three of us can continue to work with employers and have close relationships that we have developed over a long period of time with clients.”
CHS Benefits is a firm believer in Edmonton’s business community and enjoys giving back to causes such as Alberta Special Olympics, Recreation for Life Foundation, Effort Society, and many more.
“In Edmonton it is about business, but also doing things the right way,” cites Carl. However, “I wish every company knew how good and knowledgeable we are about the benefits business.”
As a smaller firm up against the likes of national insurance and group benefits corporations, it’s easy to turn to a brand name before realizing the agility and personal service of a local family-run firm. One only needs to look to CHS Benefits’ decades long service record and outstanding reputation to realize that the personal touch is the best way to go when it comes time for employers to develop long-term benefit plans for their companies and their employees.
With more than 25 years of service behind the firm, CHS Benefits looks forward to continued growth through the many referrals the firm receives from happy clients.
Learn more about CHS Benefits and how group plans
can benefit you and your employees by visiting