Planning for a Successful Annual Enrollment

Annual Enrollment

It’s hard to believe that Annual Enrollment season is quickly approaching for most employers in the United States.

With so many moving pieces, it can be easy to get caught up in the weeds and it can be challenging to understand where to start the journey. For that reason, we wanted to share some leading practice recommendations to help set you, your team, and your employees up for success this coming year.

1. Listen to your employees. Were there some benefits that yielded high participation while others did not? What did your employees find helpful last year while conducting their annual enrollment? If you are not sure as to what went well or what did not, there’s an opportunity to work with Veritas Prime and our Qualtrics team to source feedback specific to this. In turn, your team has the knowledge needed to create an optimal benefits package that not only gives your company the highest return on investment, but really resonates with your employees.

2. Work with your broker if you have one. Brokers can truly be your best advocate when negotiating benefit premiums for current or potential insurance carriers. In addition, you can leverage our listening tool to work with your broker and create a benefit offering right for your employees. If you don’t have a broker, but are interested, please reach out to Veritas Prime and we are happy to connect you with some of the brokers we work with regularly.

3. Create a game plan for your strategy. If you’re changing benefits and carriers, then it likely makes sense to host an active enrollment period. If everything but rates are essentially holding constant, then perhaps you can leverage a predominantly passive enrollment period. It is important to keep in mind that if you are looking to maintain a predominantly passive enrollment, leading practice is to require employees actively re-elect their spending account contributions each year. It’s federally required for HSA, so it tends to be more well received by the employee if all spending accounts are set up the same way.

4. Talk with your benefits administration software team. Let them know if you’re planning on going to market for some or all your benefits. Discussing timelines are essential for success. If you know when you typically conduct Annual Enrollment, let your benefits technology support team know and work backwards to determine the appropriate decisions and build times for you. If you don’t have a benefits administration software team, then it’s possible that Veritas Prime can help with that, too.

5.Work with your carriers. Late third quarter and early fourth quarter can be incredibly busy for your insurance carriers. Go ahead and work with your benefits technology support team today to confirm with each carrier when enrollments need to be processed in the carrier system to ensure cards in hand and coverage is in effect by the start of the new plan year.

6.Communicate early and often! The average employee spends less than 18 minutes making their annual enrollment elections. That’s not a lot of time for some incredibly important and impactful decision making. By communicating early and often with your employees, you can help them understand what has changed legislatively (such as IRS Contribution limits) or what they have the power to change on their own during the upcoming enrollment period.

Nicole Coffman
Director of Emerging Services & Benefits

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