The principle behind health insurance being more expensive for smaller pools is that, as the group gets smaller, it is much harder for the insurance companies to predict the total medical expenses for the by someone with constant health problems, will be compensated by the almost no costs generated by healthier people within the group. As the group increases in size, the latter is more likely to happen. In large groups, it is also possible to predict more clients receiving the service, hence the price is low for larger groups. On the other hand, when there is a small group of clients, the administrative costs have to be split among less people, therefore the increase of the service.
2.- a.- The whole point of providing all these “lifestyle” type of benefits is to keep the employee motivated and to give her/him more reasons to stay with the company. By providing these types of benefits Google is also aiming to attract a better pool of candidates. They might be looking for people specific befits mentioned in this question, it is probably clear that Google is willing to invest in keeping their employees happy in order to achieve better results. It is a proven fact that happy/motivated employees perform many times better than others. As for the costs that Google faces for offering these benefits, they might also be lower considering the financial principle of economies of scale, the total cost of providing free meals and fitness facilities can be spread among all the employees that are able to make use of them.
As for these benefits as a recruiting too, they are highly effective if Google is looking forward to recruiting employees for all its areas. However, if Google is looking for specific types of employees for some technology-related degrees, or they could offer credits for technology equipment the employees buy for personal use (laptops, cell phones, black berries). That way, they make sure that they are attracting the kind of employee that will develop...
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