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4 Tips for an Exceptional Post-Open Enrollment

Open enrollment is winding to a close. This might be a cause for celebration for many HR professionals, or at least a moment of relief.

But just because something is over doesn’t mean it was as effective as it could be. According to Forbes, approximately half of employees don’t understand their benefits and about 80% don’t review their benefit materials.

What if that relief could be molded into confidence for the entire process moving forward? This could translate to:

  • more employee knowledge
  • improved offerings
  • greater workforce engagement
  • clear opportunities for growth

Enter post-open enrollment, a phase perhaps just as crucial as any other piece of benefits administration. By investing the right amount of attention in this step, you’ll be able to consistently enhance your open enrollment experience.

Consider the following tips to make the most out of your post-open enrollment:

1. Gather employee feedback

It’ll be hard to enhance your process if it isn’t informed by your workforce. Obtaining your employees’ initial reactions — both positive and negative — to open enrollment helps you build an experience with their needs in mind.

Before you speak with your staff as a whole, try speaking with your HR team, managers or a few select workers. This will help you get an overview of your process and potentially identify a larger issue that affects most of your workforce. And though this kind of feedback might not land you the most candid responses, it may help you generate the questions for a method that could — anonymous employee surveys.

Through a purposeful series of questions that don’t shy away from tough or negative responses, you’re able to get closer to what employees truly need out of the process.

And a powerful, companywide survey tool helps you administer, gather and send your open enrollment questions with ease. When you spend less time simply sending and receiving your surveys, you have the chance to spend more time discussing the responses with your HR team and, with the proper planning, use that data to enhance your open enrollment.

2. Consulting your HR leaders

Your HR team will often get the brunt of your workforce’s benefits questions, making their expertise a needed resource during post-open enrollment. In a study from Forrester Research, 79% of employees wanted better benefits education so they could fully understand their options over the next year. It’s not that your HR professionals don’t have the information your workforce needs, but that they may not have a clear path to providing it to employees.

Hosting a conversation with them helps shed much-needed light on any disconnect between your offerings and your employees’ understanding of them. And when these talks are backed by the feedback you collected in the previous step, your team is given a road map toward what employees need out of open enrollment.

3. Leverage technology

Employees need a system for enrolling in benefits that’s as intuitive as it is comprehensive. In fact, you may discover many of your employees’ concerns could have less to do with the quality of your offerings and more with the way your benefits are presented to them.

A full-spectrum benefits administration tool helps employees navigate open enrollment while granting them further insight, which in turn alleviates your HR team of tedious data entry. The ideal benefits administration software should:

  • allow for an easy comparison between benefits
  • automatically communicate to benefit carriers
  • provide the impact of your employees’ selections on their pay in real time
  • quickly notify HR of any potential issues
  • integrate seamlessly with the entirety of your HR software

The right tech is more than just a perk — it’s game-changing. One HR manager at a Florida-based law firm was able to shrink an average of 30 hours a week spent on open enrollment to just five to eight hours, reducing her time spent on the process by 75%!

4. Prioritize communication

Ultimately, building a better open enrollment requires transparency. The benefits you offer are for your employees, so it makes sense to keep them in the loop on any changes and improvements.

Share how you’ve collected and acted upon your data with your workforce through email, meetings and other announcements. This not only builds a culture of feedback that enhances your workplace, but also leverages a sense of trust and encourages engagement.

Likewise, your leadership, including the C-suite, should be apprised of your post-open enrollment findings. This will not only help influence new or reconfigured benefits packages, but also help them make informed decisions about areas like recruitment and retention.

Above all, remember that post-open enrollment isn’t a temporary step, but a renewable opportunity that will help keep your benefits administration relevant and competitive year after year.

To learn more about this crucial step, read our post-open enrollment guide. And see how our powerful benefits administration software could help drive your business forward.

 

DISCLAIMER: The information provided herein does not constitute the provision of legal advice, tax advice, accounting services or professional consulting of any kind. The information provided herein should not be used as a substitute for consultation with professional legal, tax, accounting or other professional advisers. Before making any decision or taking any action, you should consult a professional adviser who has been provided with all pertinent facts relevant to your particular situation and for your particular state(s) of operation.