Benefits enrollment can be a major stressor and time strain for HR staff. New hires are excited to learn about their benefits. They are sure to have plenty of questions reflecting their individual priorities and circumstances. Long term employees also need a lot of help during open enrollment periods, especially as deadlines get tighter.
Is there HR software that can help streamline benefits enrollment? You can probably guess our answer to that question, but you may be surprised by the number of advantages the right benefits administration software can offer.
What is benefits enrollment?
Benefits enrollment is a predetermined period of time when employees may elect or change the benefit options available through their employer, such as health, dental, and life insurance, as well as an array of ancillary benefits.
New hires might immediately get company electronics and ID badges, but you typically aren’t handing them a personal health insurance card on their first day. Benefits enrollment is a lengthy, time-consuming process that requires a ton of paperwork for signing up for things like insurance.
Throughout the year, HR staff communicate with vendors—directly or via a benefits broker—about any changes to policies and enrollment periods. Paperwork and policy details need to be kept up to date. Additionally, employees need answers to questions and reminders about deadlines. This (and so much more) is all a part of the benefits enrollment experience.
Open enrollment vs. new hire enrollment
The biggest time for enrollment is when new hires first join the company. Employee onboarding usually includes an overview of benefits and related paperwork, even if some benefits take weeks or longer to become accessible. With HR software, benefits enrollment can begin before the employee’s first day in the office.
Some employees will change their mind about benefits year to year. The designated period for new policies and voluntary changes is open enrollment. Though it varies by company, a common enrollment period is around November.
Check with vendors to verify dates and any changes to policies or paperwork. Employees may need reminders about open enrollment periods, paperwork, and deadlines.
Improve enrollment with benefits administration technology
Benefits administration software improves the experience for employees as well as HR staff. Improve efficiency and accuracy while reducing frustration. Here are just a few of the perks you can expect.
Reduced administrative hassle
Manual paperwork involves walking employees through each page and signature. Missing signatures can mean chasing down employees as deadlines approach. Worse, data transfer errors lead to missed, underpaid, or overpaid coverage.
Answering important questions
Digital benefits enrollment makes it easier for employees to get answers and further clarification immediately. Experts can answer questions as they arise instead of saying “I’ll have to get back to you later” during a face-to-face paperwork meeting.
Benefits administration portals provide an additional channel for messages and reminders. Don’t let deadline reminders, important forms, and plan education get lost in the email inbox.
Easier access 24/7
Around-the-clock access gives your workers a chance to thoughtfully research and compare policies. It allows them to get input from their spouse about options. Managing benefits shouldn’t feel like a rushed distraction from the employee’s daily work.
Employees love the benefits they actually use. Give them more direct control through secure online portals. They’ll appreciate the freedom and measure of independence.
Benefits administration software replaces folders and binders with autofill digitized forms. Connect securely with approved vendors for quick filing. Automatically direct employees to overlooked initials and signature lines.
Saved time for all
Managers and HR staff don’t want to spend hours walking each employee through repetitive, manual paperwork. Likewise, employees appreciate the clarity and speed of digital portals.
Mailing forms and manual data entry both create opportunities for human errors. Improved accuracy is one of the top ten advantages of benefits administration software. It’s easy for important changes to get lost in the shuffle between filing cabinets and binders.
Send out benefits enrollment reminders automatically. When employees can manage routine enrollment online, your HR staff can focus on more challenging questions. Remote workers can sign up for benefits without an extra trip to the office.
Better recordkeeping and data
Which benefits are the most popular with employees? Which benefits are most cost effective? Get automatic reporting and analytics to better understand your workers and adapt to their needs. When it comes to benefits administration, your HR software can compile an extensive range of data for analysis.
Clear COBRA compliance
Administer COBRA efficiently for employees and ex-employees who qualify. Document that key forms have been received and signed for compliance and recordkeeping.
Take your benefits enrollment and administration system to the next level with proven HR technology. The right software helps your company and your workers get more utility and enjoyment out of benefits.
Learn more about how Netchex can improve your company’s benefits enrollment with HR technology:
Learn more about our Benefits Administration software, where comprehensive doesn’t have to mean complex. Netchex makes Benefits Administration (and benefits enrollment) easy, straightforward, and worry-free.
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