It’s a challenging period for companies around open enrollment time. Human Resource professionals and benefit teams may be wondering if they’ve done everything possible to make this a successful event within their organization. They have a long list of goals that must be accomplished and often with limited time and resources.
A solid benefit communications plan can help prepare and engage employees. Today’s health plan and benefit options are often complicated to understand and require breaking information down into bite-size pieces. Benefit professionals must also connect with remote workers, reach spouses and create relevant messaging for a multigenerational workforce.
Five Tips for More Effective Benefits Communication
This requires effective communication efforts to hurdle these types of obstacles and to be successful. Human Resource professionals who take a multi-channel approach will see their efforts pay off in the results. Benefit experts suggest there are at least five proven tactics that will surely get employees to take action this open enrollment season and make their campaign successful.
It’s time to shake up the same old communication plan. Better results require better or new ways of communicating. To see measurable change requires getting employees’ attention. For example, reinvent learn-at-lunch meetings to benefits-themed coffee breaks or hand out small giveaways to generate excitement around a new offering and create positive momentum around your benefits package.
If using a company intranet, now’s the time to add some webcasts or video so employees can view information at a convenient time. Also, consider leveraging mobile technology, text messaging and social media to reach the younger generation.
There’s a lot of noise in the workplace. To be heard through the clutter interrupt employees’ thoughts periodically. For example, build interruptions into your company’s alert system. Make them read a pop-up message before being able to continue their work at their computer.
Tactfully enlist the help of colleagues to get the word out to their peers. Insurance terms and HR jargon can be confusing. Getting employees to explain how they use their benefits, like a HSA is more impactful than a definition on a piece of paper. Reach influencers and invite them to participate in focus groups and engagement meetings to get their perspective and recruit their support.
Communicate like a Marketer
Make a visit to the marketing department to get some inspiration for messaging. The more targeted the better. Have employees with children? Target them about FSAs and dependent care FSAs. Leverage your communication with highly targeted, specialized messaging and a bit of marketing magic.
For even more information, check out 4 Tips for Supporting HDHP Newbies.
Source: Employee Benefit Plan Review. Benefits Communication Success: Strategies to Deliver Measurable Results. September 2017. PP15-17.