Open enrollment provides employees with a chance to review their healthcare benefits plan for the year. It can last anywhere from a few weeks to a few months, and it can take an overwhelming amount of work from businesses and carriers if they don’t engage in the right practices to prepare and see themselves through open enrollment. To help, here are some benefits enrollment best practices to keep in mind!
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7 Best Practices for Benefits Enrollment
There are many different practices you can engage in to make your open enrollment processes go as smoothly as possible. From updating programs to educating employees, maintaining compliance, and preparing for potential problems, let’s look at seven of the best open enrollment practices for you to start using today:
Personalize the Process
Open enrollment can be a confusing, detached process for your employees. They may not understand all that they are being offered or how to get what they want—especially if the technology and terminology are complex or convoluted.
One way you can help alleviate some of the stress that comes with the enrollment process is by personalizing certain aspects. Have one-on-one conversations with employees to help them understand their options, or host workshops to discuss options on a more personal level without as much technological interference.
Review and Update Existing Programs
When open enrollment season rolls around, you have a great opportunity to review the wellness initiatives, benefits, and organizations within your company. Bolstering or adding different programs, while costing you a bit more money, can help you attract and retain more employees. You can also take this opportunity to save some money by identifying and cutting back on less engaging healthcare initiatives that employees generally don’t care about.
One of the best ways to promote engagement with open enrollment is by consistently reminding and educating your employees about it and its benefits year-round. For most people, the option to engage with open enrollment only happens once a year, but if that season comes around while they are particularly healthy and not worried about medical care, they may not think they need those benefits. This can end up becoming a serious disadvantage if they determine they need those benefits after the period ends.
Continually remind your employees about open enrollment and their healthcare benefits throughout the year through wellness initiatives, inviting speakers to talk about health, sending health-specific newsletters, having health screenings on-site, hosting fitness classes, and more. That way, when open enrollment comes around, your employees will have an improved knowledge of the process and potentially improved physical health as well.
Keep Up with Compliance and Requirements
Compliance issues can be one of the greatest problems you deal with during open enrollment—if you fall away from the standards or don’t keep up with new changes and requirements. Understanding where your open enrollment programs need to be in a legal sense can protect not only your employee’s benefits, but you and your company as well. Make sure you stay up-to-date on all of the newest changes so that your company is protected from potential legal or licensing trouble.
Work with Technology
Technology is a wonderful gift that makes life so much easier in numerous ways. One of the ways it can be most beneficial for you is by simplifying your company’s open enrollment processes. Where a person may take hours to process all of the endless paperwork that comes with group healthcare plans for a large number of employees, technology exists to drastically cut that time down. It can help you easily manage multiple benefits offerings, streamline communications, simplify regulations, workflow routines, and more.
Explore all the tools and services available when you work with Beckham Insurance Group.
Develop a Special Enrollment Plan
Employers usually provide employees with an opportunity to enroll in company health programs when they first become eligible during the enrollment period. However, not every eligible employee signs up for benefits during that time, and they can end up missing their chance to enroll.
Fortunately for them, there are options for special enrollment plans that can accommodate new plans outside of the original enrollment period. Largely, this is because the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) required that group health plans provide special enrollment options for select individuals. By developing and maintaining one of these plans, you will be better able to care for those required by HIPAA and others who may need special enrollment accommodations.
Prepare for Post-Enrollment Problems
No matter how well thought out your open enrollment plans and practices are, there is always room for challenges to pop up along the way. There may be issues with employees, certain healthcare plans, carriers, technology, or any number of other areas that are involved in open enrollment. Taking time to assess possible problems that may arise and determining the best ways to address them can go a long way in helping you recover from them if they do crop up.
Work with Beckham Insurance Group
You’ve found the employee benefits broker you’re looking for. With progressive technology, game changing financial solutions for employees, and high-level customer service, Beckham Insurance navigates the complicated world of employee benefits for you.