The importance of Open Enrollment can’t be overstated. It’s your one chance to help employees select the benefits they need—benefits that will encourage them to be more productive and loyal workers. You want Open Enrollment to go off without a hitch.
Here 10 major Open Enrollment mistakes. Read them now so you don’t make these mistakes later.
- Not raising awareness of Open Enrollment. Some things should be kept secret, but Open Enrollment isn’t one of them. Employees should know when it’s coming, what’s available and all the deadlines.
- Not explaining options in plain language. Jargon tends to go over people’s heads, which doesn’t help anyone. Offer clear explanations of confusing terms.
- Not appealing to different learning styles. Different people learn in different ways. Supply information in conversation, in writing and with visuals to make sure all employees can process it in the way that best fits their learning styles.
- Not using high-tech and low-tech communication options. This is especially important if your workforce includes different generations. Cover all your bases.
- Not providing enough time. No one likes to be rushed into important decisions. Employees need enough time to read over plan details and discuss options with family members.
- Not providing reminders. Although having ample time can be beneficial, it can also lead to procrastination and forgetfulness. Counter this by providing reminders.
- Not providing appealing options. Developing a great Open Enrollment process won’t matter if the benefit offerings don’t satisfy employees. When weighing cost versus quality, remember that both sides matter.
- Not providing enough options. One size doesn’t fit all. The whole point of Open Enrollment lies in selecting the best benefits for an individual’s needs, which isn’t possible if the selection is lacking. Consider offering a range of options, including voluntary benefits. Otherwise, your workers may leave you for an employer who does.
- Not being compliant with the ACA. Despite repeal efforts, the Affordable Care Act remains in effect. Under the law, Applicable Large Employers that do not offer full-time employees affordable coverage that provides minimum essential value will face a penalty. Employers must also follow other rules, including reporting requirements.
- Not including COBRA participants. It’s easy to forget about COBRA participants when you’re focusing on active employees, but these individuals need to be included in Open Enrollment, too.
Follow this list of Best Practices for Open Enrollment to ensure a successful experience.