Employee health benefits are important to workers, so it’s no wonder that open enrollment can be a stressful time for employers and employees alike. Good communication about plan specifications, changes and costs is central to a smooth process. Group meetings are a useful tool in ensuring everyone understands the upcoming year. But employees often have confidential questions that pertain to their individual needs, so one-on-one meetings are essential also. Below we offer some tips on how to make your open enrollment procedures easy and effective.
Start Open Enrollment Early
Insurance renewal information for plans starting January 1 should be released the week of October 25th. Once you receive your letter be sure to reach out to your broker as soon as possible. They will review the policy and uncover the implications of any changes. Renewal season is the perfect time to determine if your plan is still providing the right coverage for the right price. Starting early gives you time to weigh your options and create an effective employee communication process. You will have questions and so will your employees. The sooner you begin, the smoother the transition into the new plan year.
Invest Extra Human Resources Time
Employees tend to look to their Human Resources representative for employment-related questions, including health coverage. During open enrollment, it might make sense to offer special “office hours” to ensure HR has the time to field an influx of inquiries. Also, if the same general questions are being asked, place the answers on a virtual community board.
COVID-Friendly Employee Meetings
It may be that all or some of your employees are still not coming into the office. We have all had to flex during these strange times, and your insurance broker should be willing to accommodate our new reality. At Wharton & Power Insurance, our team and our partners create personalized content for each of our clients’ employee groups per their specifications. We also offer virtual one-on-one consultations with their employees. We understand that few benefits are as personally, emotionally and financially charged as health coverage. Our team is ready to guide each employee through their options whether in person or online.