Another open enrollment season is winding down. Before this year fades too far into the past, turn to your benefits partners to help you take stock of how open enrollment went. Benefits partners provide critical, strategic support to your HR teams — communicating with employees, rolling out new technology and providing expertise about risk and compliance.
Ask your partners these questions after open enrollment ends to glean their insights into how things went.
What Went Well for Open Enrollment This Year and What Could Have Been Better?
ASome of the challenges you faced this year are likely similar to those from past years — and you should expect to confront them again in some form next year. From enhancing communication strategy to adopting new technology to cultivating year-long relationships with internal and external stakeholders, changes are always coming, and the period after open enrollment is the time to take stock.
Talk to your benefits partners about what changes worked and which ones didn’t turn out as well, and why, based on the data they collected and their observations and experience throughout the process.
What’s the Best Way to Get Employee Feedback on How Open Enrollment Went This Year?
You’ve heard from your benefit partners. You still need to take your employees’ pulse. Ask your benefits partners to share their advice on how you can best gauge your employees’ feelings about this year’s open enrollment.
Options for engaging employees include town hall meetings and surveys. It’s also important to evaluate enrollment numbers, to review general feedback and concerns, and to gather feedback from other internal stakeholders and leaders.
Now That We Know What Went Well and What Didn’t, What Should We Do with That Information?
Document the feedback you’ve received and work with your benefits partners to share it with your teams and other internal stakeholders as you start to think about planning for next year.
Roundtable discussions and monthly meetings with internal stakeholders and leaders are important ways to ensure that your organization embeds what you’ve learned and converts it into a strategic plan to improve.
How Can You Help Us Increase Engagement While Controlling Costs Going Forward?
Based on this year’s and past performance and on partners’ expertise, work with your partners to find areas to invest in to drive employee engagement during enrollment. The discussions could lead to opportunities to streamline, outsource and further control costs.
What Changes Do We Need to Prepare for in the Year Ahead?
Your benefits partners can offer valuable help to prepare for the inevitable changes ahead, including with laws, regulations and taxes.
They can also help you prepare for plan changes and cost changes that often come as a frustrating surprise in the weeks before open enrollment. By opening the dialogue with your partners early, you can be ready to address these unexpected events.
What Best Practices Are Other Companies Using That We Can Incorporate?
Your benefit partners are tuned in to what your company is doing. They’re also in the know about the industry as a whole, so be sure to seek their insight into strategies other companies are using to do more with less and to improve the overall open enrollment experience.
In keeping with that line of thought, get their insight into additional benefits you should consider offering your employees in the future to drive engagement — and satisfaction.
Winston Benefits is a Benefits Administration, Enrollment, and Communication company. We provide employers with a technology enabled benefit process in order to help communicate, enroll and administer their employee benefit programs while empowering their employees to make better benefit decisions. Contact us to learn more.