Blog by: Jeanne Hines, SPHR
Many businesses hold open enrollment periods every year when their health insurance plans renew. Much too often, employees are unaware of the changes in benefits offerings from year to year and, by default, select the same plan they chose the year before, even if it is no longer the best option for them. This year, and in the next few, health insurance will be making some major changes in the plans being offered. It’s more important now than ever for employees to have a solid understanding of the health plans they choose. Your broker or agent can provide you with tools to ensure that open enrollment is a success.
Here are some tips to ensure that open enrollment goes smoothly, and your employees are satisfied with their benefits elections:
- Hold an open enrollment meeting as far in advance of the new plan year as possible where the options are explained as simply as possible, and employees can ask questions. Invite spouses.
- Offer a summary of benefits and coverage (SBC) to employees before they make their decisions.
- Develop an employee communication strategy for open enrollment. This should include:
- Publicizing deadlines far in advance
- Regular reminders
- Offering at least seven communications in at least three different formats
- Offer benefits-related communications after implementation of the new plan explaining how to best use it.
Take an active role in ensuring that your employees get the information they need. Put these steps into action within your organization.