Benefits Administration

3 Tips to Help Prepare your Employees for Open Enrollment

There are simple things you can do to help your employees make smarter benefits choices during the open enrollment season. This can save your employees thousands of dollars when they choose the right plan for them, and it can drive down your overall health care costs. That’s a big win-win.

Consider these three strategies to increase open enrollment effectiveness:

1. Communicate early and often and in multiple ways.

It’s never too early to start the conversation with your employees. Some suggestions:

  • Remind employees that open enrollment is coming up.
  • Send out short, easy-to-read glossaries that explain what certain health insurance terms mean. Terms such as PPO, EPO, copayment, coinsurance, and in-network can be confusing to consumers, especially those who are new to the health insurance market.
  • Be sure that people know the official open enrollment dates.
  • Make it clear that employees will need to consider medical coverage as well as dental, vision, and any other ancillary products that you’ve included in your benefits portfolio.

NOTE: It’s best to settle on an agreed-upon schedule of when these communications will go out, so employees can look for them. The frequency may increase as you get closer to open enrollment.

Talking with employees via print, email, text message, on-site meetings, or a combination not only enhances the effectiveness of open enrollment, it also helps employees feel more confident in their selections and more positive about their coverage.

2. Take advantage of user-friendly, web-based technology.

Employees are consumers and, as such, expect retail-like websites that are easy to use when they’re making their benefits selections. It’s also vital to allow employees the ability to enroll in and manage their benefits by way of one secure, single-sign-on technology platform.

3. Efficiently manage benefits and eligibility and reduce HR spend.

Automating benefits administration through technology minimizes errors, tightens up eligibility and creates efficiencies by streamlining the enrollment process allowing you to focus on more strategic issues.