When open enrollment arrives each year, you need to be prepared. Choosing benefits is often stressful for employees. They need enough information and time to determine which benefits best meet their needs. Therefore, you need to begin preparing well in advance. Here are five must-follow tips to successful open enrollment communication.
Review Last Year’s Results
Review your previous year’s open enrollment results to determine areas that were successful and areas that needed improvement. You’ll face similar challenges this year, and you want to learn from previous mistakes. Meet with key team members to review what worked and didn’t work last year. Ensure each member leaves with action items and deadlines. Also, define your open enrollment objectives and how you will measure success. Use that information to decide who your audiences are and what your overall and targeted messages will be. Then, determine what media you’ll use, what your timeline is and what barriers you may face in achieving your goals.
Determine hard goals, such as the number of new enrollees you’d like to see in your company retirement plan. Also, determine one to three soft goals to make the enrollment process easier and more understandable. For example, ask how well an employee feels they understand your company’s benefits, how aware of the benefit process they are and how they would rate the effort needed to sign up for benefits.
Use Data Analytics
Have year-over-year data showing how benefits are being used to determine what training materials may help employees take better advantage of underused or under-valued choices. Keep track of and compare enrollment data in a manner that gives useful insight into how employees choose their benefits, which can show where additional education is needed during open enrollment.
Highlight Key Information
Because your employees are busy, highlight key information in all open enrollment communication. When you send employees printed material or an email, ensure the information can be read in 30 seconds, the amount of time an employee will devote to looking at the material. Use bold graphics and clear, concise language to increase engagement and comprehension of the information.
Emphasize a Call to Action
Stress a call to action at the end of each communication. Your employees must know what they need to do after reading the information to make it most effective.
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