Kelly Clark Joins Empyrean as Chief Information & Technology Officer

Kelly Clark Joins Empyrean as Chief Information & Technology Officer

Houston, TX. [Oct. 12, 2021] Empyrean, (www.goempyrean.com), a leading benefits administration technology platform and service provider, has announced that industry veteran Kelly Clark has joined the organization as Chief Information & Technology Officer.

A proven technology leader in the HR and employee benefits space with vast experience driving business transformation through IT modernization, Clark will oversee Empyrean’s future software engineering, artificial intelligence (AI) expansion, infrastructure development, business intelligence (BI) and data analytics, and innovation research initiatives at a strategic level.

“Empyrean has always been focused on bringing forward leading technology solutions to support our clients’ most complex needs and enable our robust service delivery model,” said Empyrean’s Chief Executive Officer, Richard Wolfe. “Kelly’s background and experience will help us continue to drive technology solutions that support our customers’ future challenges and objectives while ensuring we provide the best tools to support our service delivery organization.”

Prior to joining the Empyrean team, Kelly held several C-level positions at organizations like Maximus and OptumHealth, and most recently served as the Chief Information & Digital Officer at Alight Solutions. There, he led the group’s digital transformation to solve highly complex business and client needs while improving technology capabilities and overall operational excellence.

“Kelly has had a successful track record leading the technology organizations for successful startups as well as Fortune 100 and 500 companies,” added Wolfe. “Empyrean is focused on continuing to successfully scale our business, providing innovative technology and service solutions that support the unique needs of our employer clients, and providing growth opportunities for our employees.”

Last month, Empyrean launched its new website which reflects the organization’s mission to help employers create positive workplace cultures through benefits. By connecting their employees to life-enriching benefits and making stronger connections between the important role benefits play in building a company culture, Empyrean believes that companies can achieve positive organizational outcomes tied to total employee health and wellness.

“I wanted to join an organization where I could make a difference, and Empyrean’s focus on innovative technologies to improve people’s everyday experiences and drive better outcomes was crucial in my decision making process,” said Clark. “I am humbled and honored to join Empyrean at such a pivotal time and lead the IT team as we support the future of benefits administration technology.”

Empyrean’s focus on supporting total employee health and wellness has driven the company’s product roadmap as the organization continues to develop and roll out enhanced employee-centric technologies, services, and strategic carrier partnerships designed to improve employee experiences and strengthen employer brands. Some of the most impactful product rollouts this year have included new vaccination tracking features, enhanced ACA reporting capabilities, and the launch of Pilot+, Empyrean’s claims-based decision support and personalized healthcare navigation product.

Kelly earned a B.A. and Master’s Degree from the University of Manitoba. He was awarded Large Company CIO of the Year honors in 2012 by the Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal, and stays very involved in philanthropic and charitable endeavors through his support of organizations including the Feed my Starving Children, United Way, and Toys 4 Tots. Kelly resides with his family in the Minneapolis area.

About Empyrean
Since 2006, Empyrean has provided employers of varying size, industry, and benefit plan complexity with the innovative technology and best in class service necessary to accelerate their benefits strategies and bring their benefit programs to life. Empyrean’s platform and services were designed to create connected employee benefit experiences that enrich lives, strengthen employer brands, and improve workplace cultures.

Today, more than 3.6 million participants across the U.S. rely on Empyrean’s cutting-edge systems and best in class support teams to inform and guide their benefit enrollment and utilization decisions. Focused on total employee health and wellness, Empyrean is dedicated to delivering a scalable and tailored benefits experience for all employees and their families by combining innovative technology with employee-centric services to empower participants to better understand, access, and engage with their benefit programs not just at enrollment time, but on a year-round basis.

Empyrean’s platforms and services empower employees to not only better understand the value of the benefit programs offered to them, but to then connect with these benefits in a way that drives better outcomes from themselves, their families, and their organization.

Headquartered in Houston, TX, Empyrean has additional office locations in Minneapolis, MN and Nashville, TN, as well as remote teams located throughout the U.S.

Empyrean is a subsidy of Securian Financial (www.securian.com).

MEDIA CONTACT:
Brienne Driscoll
Head of Content & Communications
Empyrean Benefit Solutions, Inc.
bdriscoll@goempyrean.com

Empyrean Launches New Brand Messaging, Enhanced Corporate Website Focused on the Critical Role Benefits Play in Building Positive Workplace Cultures

Empyrean Launches New Brand Messaging, Enhanced Corporate Website Focused on the Critical Role Benefits Play in Building Positive Workplace Cultures

Houston, TX. [Oct. 11, 2021] Empyrean (www.goempyrean.com), a leading benefits administration technology platform and service provider, announces the launch of its new website and brand messaging aligned with the organization’s mission to help employers create positive workplace cultures by connecting their employees to life-enriching benefits.

Empyrean’s new brand message makes a strong connection between the role benefits play in building a company’s culture and positive organizational outcomes tied to total employee health and wellness. The brand strategy reflects Empyrean’s product roadmap, as the company continues to develop and roll out employee-centric technologies and services along with strategic carrier and service partnerships designed to improve employee experiences and strengthen employer brands.

“Our commitment to building culture through benefits challenges us to continue to think beyond simply managing the complexities around benefits administration,” said Empyrean’s Chief Executive Officer, Richard Wolfe. “How we connect with our clients’ participants, the experience they have using our technology and interacting with our people, are all critical to supporting them as they get the most out of their benefits – both today and in the future.”

Jim Priebe, Empyrean’s Chief Strategy Officer, says that while the organization has always been positioned to support an employee’s ability to better understand, access, and utilize their benefits program, Empyrean is now fully embracing its role in helping employers to improve their employee experience.

“The pandemic has shifted the thinking of many employers, putting a renewed focus on employee experience and employee wellbeing,” Priebe states. “We recognize our ability to improve benefit engagement not only at enrollment, but also on a year-round basis, helping employers connect the dots between building a strong company culture and the important role benefits play in making that a reality. It was important for us to make sure our brand message reflects this.”

“Empyrean’s innovative platform and outstanding service delivery have always set us apart, and we are taking the steps to move the needle even further,” added Priebe. “Now more than ever, we continue see clients and the market coming to us to not only solve their core administration needs, but to also find a partner that can support their benefit strategies and improve employee engagement.”

The launch of Empyrean’s new website and brand positioning comes during a year of significant growth for the organization with the expansion of headcount across all divisions and within the executive leadership team. Much of this growth can be tied to Empyrean’s rapidly expanding client base and roll out of several new technologies and services, including new vaccination tracking features, enhanced ACA reporting capabilities, and the launch of Pilot+, Empyrean’s claims-based decision support and personalized healthcare navigation product.

About Empyrean

Since 2006, Empyrean has provided employers of varying size, industry, and benefit plan complexity with the innovative technology and best in class service necessary to accelerate their benefits strategies and bring their benefit programs to life. Empyrean’s platform and services were designed to create connected employee benefit experiences that enrich lives, strengthen employer brands, and improve workplace cultures.

Today, more than 3.6 million participants across the U.S. & Canada rely on Empyrean’s cutting-edge systems and best in class support teams to inform and guide their benefit enrollment and utilization decisions. Focused on total employee health and wellness, Empyrean is dedicated to delivering a scalable and tailored benefits experience for all employees and their families by combining innovative technology with employee-centric services to empower participants to better understand, access, and engage with their benefit programs not just at enrollment time, but on a year-round basis.

Empyrean’s platforms and services empower employees to not only better understand the value of the benefit programs offered to them, but to then connect with these benefits in a way that drives better outcomes from themselves, their families, and their organization.

Headquartered in Houston, TX, Empyrean has additional office locations in Minneapolis, MN and Nashville, TN, as well as remote teams located throughout the U.S.

Empyrean is a subsidy of Securian Financial (www.securian.com).

MEDIA CONTACT:
Brienne Driscoll
Head of Content & Communications
Empyrean Benefit Solutions, Inc.
bdriscoll@goempyrean.com

Empyrean Benefit Solutions Adds Chris Melanson to Growing Sales Group

Empyrean Benefit Solutions Adds Chris Melanson to Growing Sales Group

Houston, TX. [Oct. 5, 2021] Empyrean Benefit Solutions, Inc. (www.goempyrean.com), a leading technology and service-focused employee benefits administration provider, has announced that Chris Melanson has joined the organization as Director, Business Development. In this role, Melanson will focus on the continued development of Empyrean’s presence in the eastern U.S., building employer and broker relationships in this region.

“Chris is one of several industry veterans we have added to the team in recent months,” said Chris Rossi, Empyrean’s VP, Sales. “He has a strong understanding of the employee benefits market with an expertise in ancillary coverage, and we are excited to leverage his vast experience as we continue to expand our east coast reach.”

The majority of Melanson’s decade long career has been spent in the insurance and benefits space, including several years in sales roles of escalating responsibility with both Sun Life Financial and Guardian Life.

“Benefits administration is an important point of focus today for human resources professionals and employer groups,” Melanson added. “I’m excited to be a part of the Empyrean team and look forward to contributing to our growth in the northeast.”

Melanson joins Empyrean at a time of great growth for the organization, which includes a concentrated expansion along the east coast as the group continues to add new clients in this market. Throughout this growth, Empyrean has continued to enhance and roll out new benefits administration technology, including new COVID-19 vaccination tracking and attestation capabilities, enhanced ACA reporting functionality, and the launch of Pilot+, Empyrean’s claims-based decision support and personalized healthcare navigation product.

Melanson earned a B.S. from Nichols College.

About Empyrean
Since 2006, Empyrean has provided employers of varying size, industry, and benefit plan complexity with the innovative technology and best in class service necessary to accelerate their benefits strategies and bring their benefit programs to life. Empyrean’s platform and services were designed to create connected employee benefit experiences that enrich lives, strengthen employer brands, and improve workplace cultures.

Today, more than 3 million participants across the U.S. rely on Empyrean’s cutting-edge systems and best in class support teams to inform and guide their benefit enrollment and utilization decisions. Focused on total employee health and wellness, Empyrean is dedicated to delivering a scalable and tailored benefits experience for all employees and their families by combining innovative technology with employee-centric services to empower participants to better understand, access, and engage with their benefit programs not just at enrollment time, but on a year-round basis.

Empyrean’s platforms and services empower employees to not only better understand the value of the benefit programs offered to them, but to then connect with these benefits in a way that drives better outcomes from themselves, their families, and their organization.

Headquartered in Houston, TX, Empyrean has additional office locations in Minneapolis, MN and Nashville, TN, as well as remote teams located throughout the U.S.

Empyrean is a subsidy of Securian Financial (www.securian.com).

MEDIA CONTACT:
Brienne Driscoll
Head of Content & Communications
Empyrean Benefit Solutions, Inc.
bdriscoll@goempyrean.com

Empyrean’s Stephanie Haney Promoted to Post of VP Sales, Central Region

Empyrean’s Stephanie Haney Promoted to Post of VP Sales, Central Region

Houston, TX. [July 22, 2021] Leading employee benefits administration technology and service provider Empyrean Benefit Solutions, Inc. (www.goempyrean.com) has announced the promotion of Stephanie Haney to the post of VP Sales, Central Region. Haney previously served as Director, Business Development for the organization.

In this newly created role, Haney will lead an enterprise sales team to continue the development of Empyrean’s presence in the central U.S. This move comes at a time of explosive growth for the benefits administration platform, tied closely to the launch of the group’s Pilot+ claims-based decision support technology, as well as shifting trends in the HR and employee benefits space.

“I am thrilled to have Stephanie join the sales leadership team at such a critical time in our organization’s history,” said Empyrean’s Chief Strategy Office, Jim Priebe. “I am confident that her guidance, sales expertise, and extensive industry knowledge will be incredibly valuable as we continue to expand in the central region.”

“Stephanie is deeply committed to helping clients, brokers, and carriers harness solutions to improve their benefits engagement strategies and drive better outcomes,” Priebe added. “She has always delivered outstanding results for each channel she has served.”

With more than 20 years of industry experience, Haney previously held advancing sales roles at Assurant Employee Benefits, The Hartford, and BeneTrac before joining Empyrean in 2017.

“I am excited and honored to have the opportunity to lead Empyrean’s Central Region sales team,” said Haney. “While we continue to drive Empyrean’s growth by delivering innovative technology with a service-first approach to our clients, brokers, and carrier partners, our success is ultimately defined by our ability to connect employees to life-enriching benefits when they need them most.”

Haney earned a B.S. from the University of Florida, and resides with her family in Grand Rapids, MI.

About Empyrean
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. Empyrean provides market-leading enrollment, eligibility management, ACA reporting, and other plan administration services that empowers employers, insurance consultants, and healthcare exchanges to meet ever-evolving benefit challenges. Founded in 2006, Empyrean’s integrated platform services over 3 million annual participants across a wide spectrum of employee population sizes, industry, and complexities.

Headquartered in Houston, TX, Empyrean has additional office locations in Minneapolis, MN and Nashville, TN, as well as remote teams located throughout the U.S.

Empyrean is a subsidy of Securian Financial (www.securian.com).

MEDIA CONTACT:
Brienne Driscoll
Head of Content & Communications
Empyrean Benefit Solutions, Inc.
bdriscoll@goempyrean.com

 

Mike Boyles Joins Empyrean Benefit Solutions, Inc. as Strategic Director of Business Development, Southeast Region

Mike Boyles Joins Empyrean Benefit Solutions, Inc. as Strategic Director of Business Development, Southeast Region

Houston, TX. [June 1, 2021] Empyrean Benefit Solutions, Inc. (www.goempyrean.com), a leading technology and service-focused employee benefits administration provider, has announced that Mike Boyles will join the organization as Strategic Director of Business Development. In this role, Boyles will focus on continuing to develop Empyrean’s presence in the southeastern U.S.

“Mike is an industry veteran who has already made an impact at Empyrean,” said Chris Rossi, Empyrean’s VP, Sales. “I am excited to have such a seasoned, industry veteran play such a critical role on our team.”

Boyles has spent the last decade as a sales leader in the employee benefits and benefits administration space, including time spent as a Regional Sales Director for BeneTrac as well as Web Benefits Design.

“I look forward to working with Empyrean’s proficient and experienced team, especially one that goes above and beyond to provide the best service and experience for our clients,” added Boyles. “I am thrilled to have the opportunity to introduce Empyrean’s excellent products and services to new clients and partners every day.”

The addition of Boyles is a strategic move for Empyrean as the organization continues to expand and roll out new benefits administration technology. This growth includes the launch of Pilot+, Empyrean’s newest claims-based decision support and personalized healthcare navigation product.

Boyles earned a B.S. in Mining and Mineral Engineering from Virginia Tech and resides in Jacksonville, FL.

About Empyrean
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. Empyrean provides market-leading enrollment, eligibility management, ACA reporting, and other plan administration services that empowers employers, insurance consultants, and healthcare exchanges to meet ever-evolving benefit challenges. Founded in 2006, Empyrean’s integrated platform services over 3 million annual participants across a wide spectrum of employee population sizes, industry, and complexities.

Headquartered in Houston, TX, Empyrean has additional office locations in Minneapolis, MN and Nashville, TN, as well as remote teams located throughout the U.S.

Empyrean is a subsidy of Securian Financial (www.securian.com).

MEDIA CONTACT:
Brienne Driscoll
Head of Content & Communications
Empyrean Benefit Solutions, Inc.
bdriscoll@goempyrean.com

 

Empyrean Announces Carrier Partnership with Pet Benefit Solutions

Empyrean Announces Carrier Partnership with Pet Benefit Solutions

The COVID-19 pandemic led to surge in new pet adoption and ownership across the U.S. According to a pulse survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), as of October 2020, more than 11 million American households had brought home a new pet since the start of the pandemic.

The benefits of pet ownership are evident. The same APPA study found that 75 percent of pet owners surveyed say that spending time with their pet helps them to manage stress levels while increasing their sense of well-being.

With more than 68 percent of U.S. households owning pets, the majority of which pay more than $2,000 annually in pet care, many employers have started offering supplemental products to assist employees with pet care costs.

Empyrean has announced that it has added Pet Benefit Solutions to its carrier network, enabling Empyrean clients to add this supplemental offering to their benefit programs while enabling employee enrollment through the Empyrean platform.

Comprehensive coverage under Pet Benefit Solution’s Total Pet Program includes veterinary care, pet product savings, and pet care services. There are several key advantages for employers looking to offer this benefit through Empyrean’s partnership with Pet Benefit Solutions, including:

  • Easy setup and administration within the Empyrean platform.
  • Simple and informative employee enrollment.
  • Flat rate costs for family pet plans without the need for individual quotes.
  • Simple billing processes with no reconciliation needed.
  • Coverage for all pets with no pre-existing condition exclusions, waiting periods, or deductibles.
  • High employee participation and engagement rates (up to 25%).

For more information about this new partnership, please contact us at info@goempyrean.com.

The Future of Work and Benefits after COVID-19, Part 2

The Future of Work and Benefits after COVID-19, Part 2

By Rich Wolfe, Chief Executive Officer and Steve Campbell, Chief Human Resources Officer

In part two of our series, we take a closer look at how perspectives on the typical office environment and employee wellness will shift after COVID-19.

For part one of this post series, please click here.

Reimagining of the Traditional Office

From restaurants to retail environments, COVID-19 has demanded a serious reconsideration of how we structure our everyday lives and spaces, and the office environment is no exception. As companies consider welcoming workers back to their facilities, they must also be prepared to make changes in accordance with the latest health and safety standards.

For example, open-plan offices have gained popularity over the years, and as many as 70% of offices now utilize this layout.1 Without barriers like cubicle walls, however, open workspaces can make infection control more difficult to manage. Converting an existing workspace away from an open design can be a challenge, but adding privacy features like walls or partitions may actually pay off in terms of increased productivity.2

“Hoteling” is another approach to space utilization that we are likely to see more of in the post-COVID-19 workspace. With hoteling, employees are not assigned a permanent desk. Instead, they are free to utilize any available workstation to suit their needs and schedule. The hoteling concept allows facility managers to make the most of their space without the need to increase their office footprint (provided the proper sanitizing measures are in place).

One particularly important task when planning your office reopening is determining which employees actually need to be in the office, and which employees can continue working remotely. As companies leverage staggered office schedules and more employees opt to permanently work from home, the hotel desk concept may be a good fit for businesses looking to manage facility costs alongside financial impacts and opportunities.

RELATED: Learn how to reach employees working outside of the traditional office without adding to your workload.

Renewed Focus on Holistic Employee Wellbeing

Along with health concerns, COVID-19 has also caused significant financial stress for many people and their families. In the past, however, financial wellness initiatives have often been harder to define than other aspects of employee benefit programs – especially as employers navigate the wide range of program options and employee needs regarding their financial health.

Moving forward, we can expect financial wellness to become a key area of focus for proactive benefit teams looking to ease anxieties brought about by the economic effects of the pandemic. Companies may look to offer more comprehensive programs, resources, and decision support tools that offer clear guidance to help employees reach their unique savings and budgeting goals.

READ MORE: Discover practical solutions to help address the financial challenges facing your workforce.

Additionally, although your workforce may enjoy a greater sense of flexibility while working remotely, there is also a heightened opportunity for employee burnout as a result of such changes. Today, employees are having to mentally shift their concept of work-life balance all the while working from home.

Without the defined boundaries of the office environment or their daily commute, employees may find it hard to fully “unplug” after their work day is over. With many employees expected to remain remote after the pandemic passes, addressing the risks of employee burnout is an important task that HR teams must be ready to tackle sooner rather than later.

Employees’ mental health will remain an important priority as the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to disrupt everyday life. Building awareness of your mental health resources and benefits – such as wellness programs and employee assistance programs (EAP) – will be a particularly crucial task to help support your employees through this transition.

Your benefits administration provider should be aligned with your benefits strategy throughout this unique period (including accommodating any additional focus on employees’ financial, mental, and overall wellbeing) and be ready to communicate and adjust to any changes as necessary to best support your employees.

HR leaders remain at the forefront of helping guide employees through this uniquely challenging period. For expert tips to help manage the latest demands on your business and communication strategy, check out Empyrean’s COVID-19 Communication Guide here.  And for the latest insights into employee benefits, download your copy of the 2020 Benefit Trends Report from Empyrean.

Looking toward the future, it is clear that reliable partnerships and the right technology will become even more critical for every company’s continued success. As you develop and evolve your own COVID-19 strategy, be sure to evaluate the preparedness level of your partners as well. Doing so now will help ensure that both your business and workforce are ready to tackle whatever comes next – no matter what.

References

  1. Agovino, Theresa. “Fine-Tuning the Open Office.” Society for Human Resource Management. Alexandria, VA. June 2019.
  2. Wertz, Jia. “Open-Plan Work Spaces Lower Productivity and Employee Morale.” Forbes. Jersey City, NJ. June 2019.
The Future of Work and Benefits after COVID-19, Part 1

The Future of Work and Benefits after COVID-19, Part 1

By Rich Wolfe, Chief Executive Officer and Steve Campbell, Chief Human Resources Officer

In this first post of this two-part series, we examine several ways in which COVID-19 has changed how and where work gets done, and explore how these effects may shape the future of work in a post-pandemic world.

In just a short time, COVID-19 has had a profound and long-lasting impact on the way people and organizations everywhere approach their work. While there is much uncertainty surrounding the pandemic, there are also valuable opportunities for organizations to evaluate the status quo, optimize their operations, and stay adaptive.

A major factor driving these opportunities has been the switch to remote work – as well as the need for secure and mobile-ready technology to support this move. Here, we look at how these changes will affect the way employers approach the concept of work going forward.

Increased Demand for Remote Work and Job Flexibility

Remote work capabilities are a defining factor among companies that were best prepared to handle the sudden emergence of COVID-19. Today, the ability to work from home is no longer just an employee perk; it is fast becoming an employee expectation, and has also proven to be an essential element of a strong business continuity plan.

Prior to the pandemic, there had been a 91% increase in the number of employees working remotely since 2009.1 Now, an estimated 66% of employees are working from home 2 – and both employers and employees are beginning to recognize the benefits of working outside of the traditional office space.

Working from home saves employees time and money by eliminating the costs associated with a typical work day, including the daily commute. Companies with a large remote employee population can also save on facility expenses, as well as widen access to top talent outside of a company’s immediate vicinity.

While working from home was certainly gaining popularity before the current pandemic, COVID-19 has pushed employers to embrace remote work at a pace that some HR leaders did not expect for at least another decade. Today, both employees and employers are recognizing that working in the usual office setting may not be necessary or even as productive as once thought.

Some organizations have struggled to overcome concerns about productivity and professionalism while allowing employees to work outside of the office. These concerns are understandable, but employees can actually be more productive when working from home under the right conditions.3

For many people, the flexibility afforded by working from home will be difficult to relinquish after this pandemic has passed. Moving forward, business leaders can expect job flexibility and remote work capabilities to remain a significant draw for talent – especially now that employees have experienced the benefits of remote work for themselves.

RELATED: How to reach your mobile workforce with engaging benefits messaging without adding more to your plate

Secure and Mobile Technology for Business Continuity

The organizations that have seen the most success during the COVID-19 pandemic were those that maintained a modern mobility strategy as a key focus of their technology infrastructure. Social distancing measures and lockdowns have made it difficult (and in some cases, unsafe) for employees to travel and work in the office as usual. Now it is crucial that employees have access to the secure technology solutions necessary to ensure productivity, collaboration, and data security across their entire team – regardless of location.

Unfortunately, not all businesses were prepared for such a sudden shift in their daily operations. For instance, a key aspect of a strong mobility strategy is 100% laptop deployment – paired with access to a secure virtual private network (VPN).

One important limitation on mobility is that traditional offices have typically relied on static desktop computers for employee use. While laptop computers often require a larger investment than desktop machines, they also ensure that employees have the hardware and software necessary to work while away from the office. After the COVID-19 pandemic, we can expect companies to focus more heavily on optimizing their technology infrastructure to support more robust mobility strategies and business continuity plans, including the switch to mobile hardware.

While organizations adjust to sudden changes in operations, this is also an important time to evaluate the preparedness of your key vendors. It is imperative that your essential business providers – such as your benefits enrollment and administration partner  – were properly prepared prior to the emergence COVID-19 pandemic, to ensure you and your employees continued to experience uninterrupted, high-quality benefits service.

READ MORE: Discover the three essential aspects of a benefits administration platform and find the best partner for your business

As working from home becomes increasingly mainstream, HR teams must focus on building a strong communications strategy, developing a remote-friendly culture, and assembling the right vendors to support employees’ needs across a widely dispersed workforce. How are your partners prepared to help you make the necessary shifts to meet these changes head on?

For more insights into how employee benefits will evolve due to COVID-19, download the 2020 Benefit Trends Report from Empyrean here – and be sure to check back for part two of this post coming soon.

References

  1. Reynolds, Brie Weiler. “159% Increase in Remote Work Since 2005: FlexJobs & Global Workplace Analytics Report.” FlexJobs Corporation. Boulder, CO. July 2019.
  2. “Working from Home During the Coronavirus Pandemic: The State of Remote Work.” Clutch Co, LLC. Washington, D.C. April 2019.
  3. Choudhury, P., Larson, B., and Foroughi, C. “Is it Time to Let Employees Work from Anywhere?” Harvard Business Review. Boston, MA. August 2019.
Empyrean Stands in Solidarity with the Black Community and our Colleagues of Color

Empyrean Stands in Solidarity with the Black Community and our Colleagues of Color

By Rich Wolfe, Chief Executive Officer

While the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact millions of Americans, so too do systemic injustices against African Americans and people of color. As a company that is a proud of our diverse and inclusive workforce, Empyrean supports the nationwide call to bring an end to racial inequality and violence.

In just a short time, we have witnessed incomprehensible brutality, as well as seen communities come together in the spirit of change. This is an intensely challenging time in our history, and it is up to each of us to maintain our composure, reflect on our values and privileges, and take responsibility for our actions as we work to shape and set an example for the future.

This is a moment rife with anxiety and uncertainty, as cities and businesses across the country grapple with the reality of simultaneous public health and civil rights crises. The tragic and wrongful deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Amaud Arbery, and so many others has understandably sparked outrage and grief that has led to a global call for action. Nationwide demonstrations have encouraged renewed dialogue about how people of color are treated in this country, and what we as a society – and as community and business leaders – can do better.

While the damage to livelihoods and neighborhoods during moments of violence have been saddening, we are also deeply inspired and moved by the peaceful demonstrations and enlightening conversations that have taken place in cities around the world.

There is much work to be done in order to unite, heal, and move forward. Answers and change will not come overnight. In the meantime, we hope you and your families remain safe and healthy, as we work together to bring an end to injustice and discrimination everywhere.

Empyrean stands with those that oppose racism, intolerance, and violence in our communities. We look forward to the day when equality is a reality, and we are committed to doing our part to ensure that day comes.

COVID-19 Update: The Latest on How Empyrean is Keeping Our Clients Connected and Our Employees Safe

COVID-19 Update: The Latest on How Empyrean is Keeping Our Clients Connected and Our Employees Safe

By Rich Wolfe, Chief Executive Officer

As many states begin relaxing stay-at-home orders and businesses prepare to reopen, Empyrean remains focused on helping our clients and participants navigate the latest impacts to their benefits while keeping our employees protected.

HR teams all across the country are grappling with the sudden changes and uncertainty brought on by COVID-19. At Empyrean, we recognize the difficult challenges and decisions you are facing regarding your workforce and business – and as always, we’re here to help.

Right now, the dependability of your benefits administration partner is the last thing you should have to worry about. The accuracy of your benefits data and the quality of your service cannot be compromised, especially now. That’s why our Empyrean team is working to ensure your solution and services continue performing as expected – without interruption – every single day.

From managing workforce reductions, special open enrollment periods, and the most recent compliance updates, to making sure your employees have access to the most up-to-date benefits information – Empyrean is here to support you every step of the way.

And like you, we know that our people are what truly drive our success. That’s why the wellbeing of our employees and their families has remained our top priority as we plan for the months ahead. With our employees’ safety in mind, Empyrean will continue our company-wide remote work policy through at least June 30, 2020.

Our leadership and crisis management teams are carefully monitoring the latest developments around COVID-19, and may extend this policy as the situation evolves. Each of our locations will also conduct a phased re-entry once it is deemed safe for employees to return to the office.

While the majority of our workforce remains at home, Empyrean’s facilities continue to be monitored and kept secure 24/7/365. As part of our robust business continuity planning, all Empyrean teams are 100% virtually enabled and laptop deployed. This preparedness allowed Empyrean employees to immediately transition to working remotely, while other vendors struggled to make the switch.

Today, all Empyrean services remain up and running with full capabilities, and we are pleased to announce that there have been no service interruptions for our clients due to COVID-19. We continue to welcome new clients onto the Empyrean Platform, and to help our current clients adapt to the many changes they are facing during this crisis.

Empyrean is working closely with our clients and partners to assist with creative solutions to support employers’ rapidly evolving needs. We are also transitioning new customers onto the Empyrean Platform via our fully virtual implementation and testing processes. Meanwhile, our in-house compliance experts are keeping a close eye on the latest updates to benefits compliance regulations and best practices as we navigate this new environment.

During these difficult times, it has been truly inspiring to witness the resilience and dedication of those in our community. I continue to hear from our customers, who are sharing stories of how they are overcoming their toughest obstacles with the help of our team. We are immensely proud of everything we have accomplished together, even while apart. I look forward to celebrating these successes in person when we are able to safely gather once more.

I want to again express my appreciation for all who are working to make this new normal a little easier for everyone – including health care workers, essential employees, and employees and their families at home nationwide. While the current situation has challenged us, the strength and support of those around us continue to inspire hope for the future.

And as always, Empyrean is here to help guide you through the every change surrounding COVID-19 and your employee benefits. Please reach to your client service team directly or contact us at info@goempyrean.com if we can be of assistance at any time.

On behalf of all of us at Empyrean, I hope you and your loved ones remain safe and healthy. Thank you for the invaluable work you are doing every day to keep your employees protected and your company moving in the right direction.

COVID-19 Update: Empyrean is Committed to Supporting the HR Community

COVID-19 Update: Empyrean is Committed to Supporting the HR Community

By Rich Wolfe, Chief Executive Officer

In just a few short weeks, the COVID-19 pandemic has affected countless lives and businesses. Now more than ever, you need a partner that you can rely on, and your employees need access to benefits support they can trust. Learn what the Empyrean Team is doing to keep your participants connected to their benefits during this crucial time.

Everyday life has undergone a major shift in the past few weeks, and there’s no doubt that this is an anxious time for many. People are concerned about their health and mental wellbeing, their families, their finances, and more. Meanwhile, many employees (quite possibly yourself included) are learning how to balance the demands of working remotely while caring for children and loved ones at home.

There’s a lot of uncertainty right now – but as an Empyrean client, you can be certain that your benefits administration is taken care of, no matter what.

From transitioning to a remote workforce to restructuring your organization, Human Resources and benefits professionals are facing some of the toughest challenges of their careers. There is no time to deal with solution failings, service interruptions, or data errors. We understand, and we’re here to help.

You count on Empyrean to be there for you and your employees, and our team takes that responsibility seriously. That’s why we’ve taken steps to ensure you never experience a drop in service due to a major disaster, emergency, or other unforeseen event – including the evolving situation surrounding COVID-19.

At Empyrean, business continuity is more than an action plan – it’s our promise to you. We’ve continuously invested in our infrastructure to quickly adapt to sudden changes or emergency situations whenever necessary, including leveraging remote work and service capabilities.

Empyrean recently implemented a remote work policy, which protects the health of our employees and their families while ensuring that your solution capabilities and service quality remain unchanged. Empyrean Team members are now utilizing secure technology to work from home where possible, and they retain access to all of the tools and resources they would have while in the office.

All Empyrean implementation and ongoing teams are trained and prepared to provide 100% of our services to all of our clients while working remotely. Your administrative services, participant services, and account team will all remain the same during this time.

To protect those employees who are essential to our on-site operations, we are also utilizing medical-grade sanitizers and enhanced cleaning practices at each of our three offices. Empyrean’s facilities continue to be maintained, monitored, and kept secure 24/7.

While the impacts of COVID-19 are unprecedented, you can trust that Empyrean is uniquely prepared to meet your needs as this situation unfolds. After Hurricane Harvey brought historic flooding to the Greater Houston area in 2017, our Empyrean Team proudly continued to support daily service, numerous implementations, and Annual Enrollment for our clients without interruption. Today, Empyrean continues to deliver on our commitment to bring certainty to you and your participants during this uncertain time.

Being able to confidently rely on your people and partnerships is so important, especially now. On behalf of all of us at Empyrean, we are thankful to be a trusted part of the HR community.

As people continue to practice social distancing, it’s crucial that you have the time to care for your people across those long distances. Empyrean is working to quiet the noise of benefits administration, so you can focus on what matters most. That is what our mission at Empyrean is all about, today and every day.

While this global pandemic may have brought about unexpected challenges for your business and employees, you can feel secure that Empyrean has your back every step of the way.

We’re here to help you get through this, together, and we’ll emerge on the other side of this crisis stronger than ever.

If our team can be of assistance to you in any way during this time, please let us know by reaching out to your Empyrean Client Service Manager, or feel free to contact our team at info@goempyrean.com.

COVID-19 Update: Empyrean Response to the Novel Coronavirus

COVID-19 Update: Empyrean Response to the Novel Coronavirus

Empyrean is committed to ensuring the health and safety of our customers, participants, and colleagues as officials and organizations work together to contain the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. Here are the latest details you need to know.

COVID-19 has prompted an unprecedented time for companies, employees, and their families nationwide. With many questions surrounding this fast-moving health concern, participants need access to reliable and accurate benefits information now more than ever.

As always, the Empyrean Team is dedicated to connecting employees to their benefits every day – whenever and wherever they need it – especially as the situation around COVID-19 continues to evolve.

 

Empyrean Business Continuity Plans

Empyrean is fully equipped to continue serving our clients and their participants during any major event or natural disaster, including the current coronavirus pandemic. Our technology infrastructure and business continuity plans have been thoroughly tested, proven, and maintained to ensure your service will continue without interruption during this critical time.

Empyrean client service teams are providing regular updates to our clients and working with our employees and partners as this situation develops. Should you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to your Client Service Manager for assistance.

Protecting our employees and their families remains a central priority for our entire team. As part of Empyrean’s robust continuity preparedness, we continuously maintain the technological and operational flexibility to enable secure and remote service across our entire workforce.

 

2020 Empyrean Client Conference – Webinar Series

Out of an abundance of caution, the 2020 Empyrean Client Conference will move from a traditional conference format into a weekly webinar series. The webinar series is scheduled to begin in April, with dates to be announced soon. This formatting change was made to protect our attendees and staff and aid in social distancing efforts, while continuing to bring thought-provoking speakers and actionable insights to our community.

We look forward to delivering valuable information during these webinars, and to hosting a safe and successful live conference next year.

 

Empyrean is doing our part to prevent the spread of the virus, and we are committed to supporting the health and wellbeing of our participants, clients and partners, and community during this difficult time. Our team continues to closely monitor the situation and is ready to respond appropriately as new information becomes available.

Empyrean Named One of 30 Great Companies to Explore ASAP

Empyrean Named One of 30 Great Companies to Explore ASAP

Empyrean has been named one of 30 exceptional companies for job seekers.

The list of employers was curated by The Muse, a leading website for job opportunities and professional advice. Empyrean was the only benefits administration company to make the nationwide list, which includes other top organizations such as Dropbox and TripAdvisor. Companies were selected based on their positive company culture, work policies, and employee feedback.

Empyrean helps Human Resources teams drive their employee benefit programs and make benefits matter every day. As a best-in-class provider of benefits administration technology, benefits enrollment solutions, and related services, Empyrean is committed to fostering a strong culture, unique workplace, and work-life balance for our employees.

Empyrean team members are benefit professionals who are motivated to succeed at every stage of their career. Benefits include competitive compensation, medical insurance, dental and vision coverage, retirement benefits, paid time off, in-office perks, and more.

Learn more about what a career at Empyrean can offer you. To see the full list of companies, visit The Muse here.

Introducing Pilot+: Use Healthcare Data to Revolutionize Your Employees’ Benefit Journey

Introducing Pilot+: Use Healthcare Data to Revolutionize Your Employees’ Benefit Journey

By Jim Priebe, Executive Vice President, Product

We live in a data-driven world that allows for high personalization in the consumer experience, from retail to airfare. So, it’s no surprise that your employees want their benefits to offer a similar experience. If you think that level of personalization is far off into the future, I’m thrilled to tell you that the future is here.

How does your benefits administration platform support your employees’ needs? Statistics show that 44% of employees say that in a perfect world, benefits selection would be more like Amazon. Empyrean’s enhanced recommendation engine, Pilot℠, delivers fast and intuitive support that provides the consumer-centric benefits shopping experience employees crave – built on more than a decade of proprietary data and research.

With Pilot­­­­­­+, we’ve expanded these capabilities even further.

Pilot+ features all the packaged benefits recommendations of Pilot, plus personalized guidance and engagement that blends health plan education, claims analysis, and targeted benefits communication. Pilot+ makes it easy for employees to not only understand their benefits, but also utilize them more effectively and cost-efficiently, year round.

Pilot+ strengthens your benefits program and strategy by intelligently automating processes:

  • Pilot helps make the most of short employee attention spans by packaging benefit recommendations into “best match” bundles, including voluntary options when available. Pilot+ adds personalized claims analysis and engagement to this process, so employees can leverage a year’s worth of information to help them select the best plan for the upcoming year.
  • Pilot’s machine-learning technology offers employees more refined and personalized recommendations over time. Ongoing claims information drives the adaptability of Pilot+, which analyzes each health care interaction provide employees with updates and actionable tips on how to best use their plan.
  • Pilot’s recommendation survey tells employees why questions are asked, so they can better understand their needs, and know how their benefit recommendations will meet those needs. Pilot+ takes education even further, by demonstrating how an employee’s chosen health plan performs according to their specific claims data, plan deductible, and spending account information – including health savings accounts (HSAs). With Pilot+, employees feel confident gaining the information they need, right when they need it, so they can leave unpleasant plan surprises behind.
  • Pilot has been rigorously tested to ensure an intuitive and inviting experience for users during the enrollment process. Pilot+ highly engages employees beyond benefits selection, offering personalized alerts and year-round communication.

Pilot+ connects employees to their benefits right when it matters most. Pilot+ automatically delivers personalized and prescriptive recommendations that are relevant to employees’ immediate needs:

During benefits enrollment. “You’ve kept your medical plan from year to year, which may be a safe option. But you have been overpaying in premiums and not going to the doctor that often. Switching to another plan could save you $1,500.”

After an accident. “Your bill from a recent leg injury just posted. You have enough to cover it through your HSA. And you can save $1,200 on your bill by filing for reimbursement using your accident coverage!”

And before a procedure or service. “Yikes! We’re sorry to see your recent claim for a concussion. If your doctor recommended a follow up MRI, you can save $200 at one of these nearby imaging facilities.”

The results? Pilot+ saves employees a median of $1,500 per year. Employees are engaged, and Pilot+ becomes their health and wealth champion.  And Pilot+ could save you up to 7% on your organization’s annual health care expenditures, all while freeing up your human resources team to focus on your priorities.

The future of benefits engagement is here. Learn more about how Pilot+ leverages claims data to engage employees at annual enrollment and beyond.

Empyrean CEO Rich Wolfe Named 2019 EY Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist

Empyrean CEO Rich Wolfe Named 2019 EY Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist

This marks the fifth consecutive year that Empyrean’s CEO and Co-Founder has received this prestigious honor.

Over nearly 12 years, Rich Wolfe has grown Empyrean to serve over 3 million participants across more than 400 clients, with tens of millions of visits to its online solutions. Today, the benefits administration technology firm serves all major industries, including energy, manufacturing, retail, healthcare, education, and professional services – across a wide spectrum of client sizes and complexity levels.

Mr. Wolfe’s company has experienced year-over-year record growth in new business and client retention since the company’s founding in 2006. Empyrean has been named one of the fastest growing businesses in the Greater Houston area for the past three years, and has been recognized on the Inc. 5000 list for six consecutive years. In 2018, Mr. Wolfe was named one of the most admired CEOs in Houston.  As a 2019 Entrepreneur of the Year finalist, Mr. Wolfe earns yet another distinction for his work connecting benefits and enriching lives through technology and service.

In its 33rd year, the EY Entrepreneur of the Year recognizes entrepreneurs who excel in areas such as innovation, financial performance and personal commitment to their businesses and communities. Finalists are selected by a panel of independent judges. Winners will be announced at a special gala event at the Marriot Marquis Houston on June 21, 2019.

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