Alex Tolbert, Founder
Bernard Health’s goals are rooted in the determination of Alex Tolbert, who founded the brokerage in 2006 as a third-year JD/MBA student. Aimed at demystifying the misaligned incentives of Health Savings Accounts (HSAs), Bernard Health has expanded its offerings to become a leading provider of employer and individual healthcare advisory and brokerage services, as well as automated HR software through the company’s proprietary platform, BerniePortal. The platform integrates with industry-leading benefits and payroll providers, and offers strategic HR features—at a very competitive price point—for efficient HR administration for small and mid-sized employers.
“For small employers, selecting HR tools can be a bewildering task,” says Alex Tolbert, Founder, Bernard Health. BerniePortal is supported by over a thousand benefit professionals across the country, which allows small employers to access robust, industry-leading software through their trusted benefits advisor.
Most small and medium-sized companies perform benefits administration manually with the help of spreadsheets, with significant risk of human error and inefficiency. BerniePortal can create and maintain payroll records, calculate benefit deductions, and perform auditing through their integration with the market’s top-shelf payroll and human capital management (HCM) solutions. “We are one of the first companies that have real-time API integration with ADP’s payroll solutions,” mentions Tolbert. By leveraging these integrations, BerniePortal eliminates human errors, saving ample time for HR managers to work on tasks that add more value to their organization.
One of the exclusive features of BerniePortal is its native integration with 1094-C/1095-C reporting. The IRS has granted BerniePortal a Transmitter Control Code for electronic filing of ACA information returns—required for groups filing more than 250 1095-Cs. By incorporating the capability within the system, BerniePortal streamlines the experience for users while cutting down the need for any third-party service to accomplish the task, unlike their competitors.
Recognizing that benefits and HR are intertwined, BerniePortal’s automation of ancillary HR functions such as onboarding of new hires, time and attendance, Paid Time Off (PTO) tracking, Applicant Tracking, and benefits administration has made the platform a comprehensive and innovative solution for HR departments. For instance, using the PTO Tracking feature, an employee can send leave requests online and wait for the employer to approve or deny the request. All the data is stored online and available with just a click, which makes time-off management easier for employees as well as human resource managers.
We are one of the first companies that have real-time API integration with ADP’s payroll solutions
Tolbert recalls how BerniePortal has helped a company in Nashville, TN with over 100 employees to streamline their HR administration. The company was facing challenges to collect individual employee details and implement benefits programs simultaneously across their different office locations. BerniePortal’s centrally-managed platform helped the client streamline data and increase internal communication, allowing the HR department to share more information about the benefits program seamlessly across the offices. BerniePortal also automated the onboarding procedure for new hires, which allowed the client to complete the new process much more efficiently.
BerniePortal’s product leadership is demonstrated through their partnership with a network of more than 100 health insurance brokerages supporting the platform. These health insurance brokerages provide superior service by providing BerniePortal to small and medium sized employers they work with.
Emanating from a health insurance brokerage itself, BerniePortal also offers an extensive amount of training and support to both health insurance brokers and employers. With ten years of experience with the platform, BerniePortal provides a tested go-to-market strategy to its partners, helping them help their clients most effectively.
The innovative features have positioned BerniePortal as a unique solution in the industry. Treading ahead, BerniePortal plans to accommodate more payroll and benefits companies under its platform and create new, innovative HR features to continue to help small to medium-sized employers compete more effectively with larger organizations.