The past year has brought several changes to the way we operate our businesses. However, one thing remains constant, many HR managers struggle with the complexities of navigating open enrollment. Open enrollment is the period of time in which employees can enroll in different health insurance plans. The enrollment process can often be chaotic for HR managers, but with the pandemic still ongoing, this year’s enrollment may be more challenging than ever before. That’s why Alltrust Insurance works with companies to determine the best option for your employees. Some options include virtual open enrollment meetings, customized video content, and for some employer groups a hybrid method with a mix of virtual and in-person communications. The following are some essential tips to having a successful open enrollment period in 2021.
Having A Strong Open Enrollment In 2021
It’s important to plan ahead for open enrollment before the period even begins. Alltrust works with companies ahead of time in a collaborative method to facilitate the following:
- Be ready to answer employee questions regarding health care reform legislation. Understand how the legislation affects your benefits offerings and be prepared to share this knowledge with employees.
- Make a list of anything new and exciting that will enhance your open enrollment processes. Plan how you will communicate these enhancements to employees.
- Consider online enrollment programs and software if you haven’t already. Allow time to implement them onto your company website before your open enrollment period.
- Maintain records of employee questions, comments, and concerns, preferred communication methods, trends in employees’ selections, and other information that will help you better serve employees during open enrollment.
- Make necessary changes to your benefits offerings before the open enrollment period to avoid rushing at the last minute.
- Survey employees on what they are seeking in terms of benefits offerings and any improvements they would like to see. Customize your offerings to your employee population after analyzing survey results.
- Consider offering new benefits, even if they are 100% voluntary.
By taking care of these responsibilities before the open enrollment period begins, you will save a ton of time and headaches trying to rush everything last minute.
3 Tips To A Successful Open Enrollment
The open enrollment period can be stressful for all parties involved. For a smooth, successful enrollment process, consider the following tips:
- Stay concise: Employees often find themselves confused or stressed during open enrollment. After all, there are many steps to this process like examining options, choosing the right plan, communicating with employees, and answering questions. In order for enrollment to run smoothly, managers need to keep information clear and concise. Keep emails about open enrollment short and to the point in order to avoid overwhelming your employees with information.
- Establish a communication plan: Roughly 33% of employees don’t fully understand their health care coverage and benefits. This is due to a lack of communication within a company. In order to keep your employees updated with all necessary information, utilize platforms such as Slack or Skype to communicate to employees.
- Create clear timelines: Another reason employees may feel stressed during open enrollment is because timelines aren’t clearly defined. Leaving your team wondering when everything is due will only add to the stress of selecting the best plan and benefits for your employees.
Alltrust works with your human capital teams to help you stay concise, establish a communication plan, and collaborates with your team to put a timeline in place.
Although employees are used to attending in-person open enrollment meetings, this is the perfect time for organizations to reimagine their benefits events and find a solution that works best for their workforce during an ongoing pandemic. For the 2021 open enrollment, we recommend for your company to go virtual. Holding virtual open enrollment fairs is a popular trend that will continue to grow as we remain in a pandemic.
Before spending your time and resources, reflect on what has been successful in past in-person open enrollment fairs and what you’re hoping to achieve this time around. Virtual open enrollment fairs are:
- Convenient: Now more than ever, employees are busy with work and personal life, as many employees continue to work from home. Between work, caregiving, and other responsibilities, employees should find virtual fairs more accessible and accommodating to their schedules. Also, consider the time savings for your employees who will be involved in planning and running the event.
- Cost-effective: A virtual event can also reduce costs for participating organizations. By going online, there is no cost for traveling or printing collateral. Going paperless is an eco-friendly bonus, too.
- Evergreen: Pushing benefits partners to share digital resources about their offerings means that you will have information available year-round to share with employees.
Plus, holding a virtual fair allows you to reuse content for future purposes. You can easily repurpose open enrollment content for new hires or other employees as needed.
Take On Open Enrollment With Alltrust Insurance
Although the open enrollment period can be daunting, proper preparation can put you in the right position to make the best choices for you and your employees. By partnering up with our team at Alltrust Insurance, we can ensure your business’s open enrollment period is as straightforward as possible. Save yourself the headache of managing healthcare coverage alone and allow Alltrust to assist you along the way. For more information on how we can be of service to you, please contact us today.