Annual enrollment (AE) is the ultimate stress test of HR’s benefits strategy, communications plan, and effectiveness. Preparing for AE is no small feat, and the outcomes of the enrollment period will impact your success for the entire plan year. For many employers, benefits enrollment also comes near the end of the calendar year – adding to HR’s challenge as they compete for employees’ attention alongside year-end priorities and the holiday season.
Enrollment might be your busiest time of the year, but it doesn’t have to mean long nights and looming headaches. With the right planning and support, this AE can be your easiest and most effective yet.
This At-A-Glance offers three comprehensive steps to help organize your efforts and ready your team to tackle every step of annual enrollment prep.
1 | Ensure Team Alignment with Your Goals and Processes
Before a long hike, you’d make sure your entire group knows which trail to take in order to reach your planned destination. And ahead of annual enrollment, you’ll want do the same with your HR team. Your entire benefits team, including your benefits administration partner and third-party vendors, must align with your goals and understand your desired outcomes.
What are you working towards this year? What has changed with your benefits or strategy, and how might that affect your employee experience, back-end processes, or compliance requirements?
Whether you’re looking to increase enrollment participation, introduce new plans or programs, or grow employees’ benefits awareness, you’ll need a solid plan that your team and partners can follow.
As you start planning, think on the following key points:
- Have any of your benefit plans, carriers, or vendors changed since your last enrollment?
- Has your organization gone through any major structural or strategic shifts?
- Are employees knowledgeable about how to enroll in their benefits, and do they know all of the tools and resources available to support them with enrollment and year-round utilization?
- – Are there any new tools or resources your employees need to know about?
- What lessons and feedback did you gather from your last enrollment experience? How should these takeaways shape your plans for this upcoming enrollment?
- What expectations do you have for both your internal team and external vendors going into AE? How have these expectations evolved since your previous enrollment?
Clearly defined and measurable goals are the most effective way to measure progress and ultimately define the success of your outcomes. Analyze year-over-year metrics and run reports as necessary to map the full “starting point” for your upcoming enrollment. As you develop your plan, make sure to account for any major changes that your business, leadership, or workforce has experienced.
Once you have outlined your goals, expectations, and challenges, invest time to connect with your benefits enrollment and administration provider to discuss your objectives. A trusted benefits administration partner will serve as a collaborative and ready extension of your own HR team, offering best practices and streamlined solutions to see that your AE is properly executed. More »
Complete the form to access the guide and learn how to align your team, develop your messaging, and execute a successful enrollment.
Empyrean manages employee health and welfare benefits programs, combining the industry’s most modern, client adaptive, and configurable benefits technology platform with expert, responsive service to deliver Hi-Touch Benefits Administration. With Empyrean, you can drive customized strategies, increase employee engagement, achieve ACA compliance and more – all on one secure system.