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3 Ways to Make the Most of Open Enrollment

Preparing for open enrollment can be a daunting process for seasoned and novice human resource specialists.

Luckily, OneDigital is here to provide the guidance you need during this exciting time! Our team has curated an open enrollment checklist to help you have a smooth and successful pre-enrollment, enrollment, and post-enrollment that will keep your employees engaged and well-informed. 

  1. Pre-Enrollment 

    It is essential to plan, educate your employees, and know your audience during the pre-enrollment period. Following these recommendations will allow you to confidently move through pre-enrollment and keep your employees informed and excited for any new benefit offerings. Here are some ways to prepare for the pre-enrollment period. 

  2. Plan Ahead

    • Survey employees on what benefit offerings and improvements they would like to see. After analyzing the results, you can make any necessary changes to your benefits offerings before open enrollment begins.
    • Consider online enrollment programs and software if you haven't already. If you plan to implement a new online enrollment program, make sure to allow time to design the program before open enrollment begins.
    • Review and modify your benefits offerings to enhance your employees' physical, mental, and financial health. Consider offering new benefits, even if they are 100% voluntary.

    Spread Knowledge

    • Hold open enrollment education sessions to review coverage options and changes. Offer information regarding benefits in various formats such as printed or electronic brochures, videos, Brainsharks, or one-on-one enrollment sessions.
    • Understand how your state's health care reform legislation affects your benefit offerings and communicate this information to employees.

    Know Your Audience

    • Be prepared to answer questions that employees frequently asked last year. In preparation for this, keep a record of employee questions, comments, and concerns so you can better serve your employees during open enrollment. With this information, you can create an FAQ sheet that you can build on each year when new questions arise. *Pro Tip: always have the answers for how much premiums will increase and if there will be any new coverage options. 
  3. Enrollment Period

    Health insurance is a complex topic that some employees struggle to grasp; through guidance, employees can confidently select their benefits and successfully navigate their coverage. During the enrollment period, provide employees with any materials that can help them make benefits decisions and have ample time for review. Provide office hours and Q&A sessions for employees and their spouses so that they can choose the best plan for their families. During open enrollment, make sure to provide employees with the materials below.

    • Open enrollment schedule, with an emphasis on the deadline
    • Open enrollment booklets and forms that highlight plan changes, rates, and carrier contact information
    • Plan summaries for all available coverage options
    • Statement of currently enrolled coverage
  4. Post-Enrollment Period

    During the post-enrollment period, check your employee's enrollment forms for any missing or incorrect information. Once all documents are verified, submit them to the carrier for processing. Before your team's plan goes into effect, ensure all benefit receiving employees have received their ID cards and information on their carrier's online benefits portal. *Pro Tip: Most carriers have mobile apps and online portals that allow customers to access their ID cards virtually and help them find in-network providers.

For additional guidance on all things open enrollment, visit OneDigital’s Open Enrollment Hub.