It’s that time of the year that all Human Resources Managers dread open enrollment. It can be an exciting time, but it becomes frustrating for business owners, HR team members and employees more than often. A slew of things such as options and prices can change in the blink of an eye. But, as an HR manager, it’s your job to administer employee benefits and ensure that they are informed of their options. Here are a few tips on managing open enrollment:
Formalize the Open Enrollment Process
Did you notice anything from last year’s open enrollment that you wanted to fix? Well, now is the time to do it. Streamline the open enrollment process by fixing those issues and simplifying it by estimating which employees will currently make changes to their open enrollment. Determine how the process will play out. Will you need employees to come down to the office, or is there a form they can fill out? How is information distributed about the open enrollment process, and how much will you tell them in a timely fashion?
The more time is given to employees, the more likely they will research their benefit options and be prepared to decide before they walk through the door. Employees will also have a better understanding of what they need in a healthcare plan and feel more willing to explore their options.
Communicate Clearly Toward Your Employees
Try hosting an open enrollment day to answer any questions that your employees might have. Some of those questions might include: Will my deductible increase? Will there be any new benefit options? Can we keep the same providers, or will we have to change? What’s my time frame for enrolling or making changes?
Consider revamping the internal communications within your company by using tools such as mailing lists, webcasts and meetings to educate your employees on their options and communicate updates on the open enrollment process. Try to avoid using jargon in any copy that you produce and answer questions concisely. If you opt for a presentation, get to the bottom of what your employees need to know and skip the fluff.
Why Is Open Enrollment Important?
Open enrollment is the only time employees can change their employer-provided benefits without a qualifying life event. It also allows your business to explore their options and see what’s out there, which can save them money in the long run. Health insurance is also the most crucial benefit that employees look for. After all, according to a study done by the University of Warwick, a happy employee is a productive employee.
However, open enrollment can set a narrow window for HR managers to complete their work. Depending on the number of employees, it can take a long time to make those changes to their healthcare benefits. Plus, this is a year-long commitment they are making, so communication and transparency are essential. So, while there are a few downsides to open enrollment, the benefits outweigh the cons ten to one. Simply put, investing in an excellent benefits package for your employees can increase employee engagement and increase your bottom line, which helps your business in the long run.
With the Right Software, Open Enrollment Can Be Easy
Skipping open enrollment is not a smart move for you or your business. It not only benefits your employees, but it benefits your company in the long haul. The work can be tedious and a hassle to deal with, making for long workweeks and processes that feel cumbersome. Streamlining the process of open enrollment can shave time off your hands by forcing you to establish a game plan that makes things easier for you and your employees.
Who knew that open enrollment could be so easy? With the right broker and benefits technology platform, you can make the open enrollment process a breeze and stress-free in no time. Make things easier for yourself, and download this tool to upgrade your HR and Benefits technology knowledge. Stay up-to-date in the industry and ensure that you and your business’s employees get their bang for their buck from their benefits. Have any questions? Contact us today!