10 Secrets from HR Pros for Easier Open Enrollment

/ Human Resources, Orbit Solutions, Time & Labor

Open enrollment periods can cause big headaches for companies that are ill-prepared to handle the influx of paperwork, employee questions, and tedious administration that accompanies benefits management.  Tenured HR professionals know only too well, the excessive hours spent on facilitating coverage without proper communication prep or technology in place that will ease the tension of benefits enrollment.

  • Announcements – Initial communication prior to the open enrollment period will help employees prepare. Announcing the impending open date can give individuals the time they need to discuss plan options with family, determine course of action, and schedule time to complete the necessary enrollment or benefits changes.
  • Highlight New Benefits or Amendments to Policies – It’s not uncommon for policy changes to occur throughout the year. This could affect those who are currently enrolled and prompt them to change their coverage. Go the extra mile to inform your staff of any changes to premiums and deductibles, and new features and coverage so there won’t be any surprises.
  • Online enrollment – While some appreciate the online self-services, others can be apprehensive about completing enrollment independent of an administrator. Emphasize the ease, accessibility, and convenience of online enrollment to alleviate any concerns. A quick, at-a-glance guide to online open enrollment may be just the resource they need to feel confident in their benefits management and minimize HR’s involvement.
  • Personalized Options – A comprehensive platform will provide a personalized experience for your employees. For companies offering multiple plans to appeal to a larger demographic, identifying an employee via their login can tailor coverage choices to only those benefits that they qualify for. This cuts down on confusion, and helps employees zero in on the coverage that’s right for them.
  • Required Fields – One of the biggest bottlenecks of benefits enrollment is the incomplete information. Using online enrollment with required form fields will eliminate this possibility and ensure compliance is addressed and the necessary information is available.
  • Administrative Alerts – If enrollment has been started but the employee has not completed submission, automated alerts can be set for benefits administrators to prompt an inquiry and facilitate the process. The goal is to have employees enrolled in a timely manner, and provide proactive assistance to those with questions.
  • Deadline Reminders – Pre-scheduling communications will help remind employees that the open enrollment period is only available for a limited time and should they miss the deadline, without a qualifying life event, they will need to wait a full year to enroll. This will motivate employees to complete enrollment as to not miss out on medical coverage.
  • Follow-Up Communication – Communication shouldn’t end at the close of enrollment. Subsequent emails to employees about their policies, and how to get answers online will minimize HR questions and foster engagement of self-service of benefits.
  • Solution Integration – Integrated payroll and time & labor solutions help administrators manage deductions from wages, and eligibility of benefits for new enrollments, and as employees modify their coverage.
  • Customized Reports – Analytics driving benefits administration will not only automate data pulls for required FTE and compliance reporting, but it can also be used to streamline compensation budgets. Analyzing usage allows managers to maximize spend on popular plans, and eliminate under-used policies.

Payroll Data Solutions (PDS), is the number one partner for HR technology solutions for companies. Our people management platform combines innovative capabilities with a user-friendly interface that engages your employees and makes open enrollment a breeze. From point and click coverage, to the HR integration you need to eliminate duplicate entry and minimize manual error, Payroll Data benefits management features are as intelligent as they are easy.

Learn more about Payroll Data’s full suite of HCM services including automated payroll, compliance, innovative time and labor tracking, recruiting and onboarding, and business intelligence reporting that drives today’s workforce.