Tips for increasing Open Enrollment and Engagement with your employees

Employees talking about Open Enrollment

Open Enrollment season is just around the corner! This year, open enrollment begins on Tuesday, November 1 and ends on Thursday, December 15. During that time, your employees will have the opportunity to enhance their current benefit portfolio to set themselves up for a successful year.

It also means you’ll be coordinating renewals, assisting with new elections and trying to sort through all the new regulatory changes. No biggie… right? The good news is that there are simple steps you can take now to help prepare your employees for a successful enrollment season.

Take a look at these insider tips that can help you engage your employees and increase enrollment in your organization’s benefits.


10 Tips to Increase Benefit Enrollment and Employee Engagement

  1. Understand Your Offerings

The most critical task you can complete to prepare for Open Enrollment is to fully understand your offerings. What plans does your organization offer? What plans can you add? Knowing the key benefits of each offering will help you communicate the plans more confidently to your employees. As an added layer of confidence, encourage upper management to become familiar with the features of your health care programs. In doing so, they will become both a resource for any inquisitive employees as well as becoming the best advocates for participation. These extra layers of support can help engage your employees and increase enrollment numbers.

  1. Prepare for Employee Questions

No matter how prepared you might be, your employees will always have new and interesting questions. While reviewing your employee benefits and any new changes that might occur this year, try to anticipate those questions from employees. Consider topics like deadlines, contribution limits and how benefits will affect dependents. A great way to help you prepare is to create a list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) so you always have a quick reference guide to address questions about relevant plans or products. 

  1. Enhance New Employee Onboarding

Creating a successful Open Enrollment season can start as early as new employee onboarding. Incorporating language around Open Enrollment and benefits assistance into new employee onboarding can help ensure they always know where to go for the information they need. This also helps establish a great first impression with new employees who can see your dedication to their wellbeing.

  1. Get the Word Out

Once you’ve secured your grasp on the details of your offerings, it’s time to get the word out about Open Enrollment to your employees. It’s best to have interactive and user-friendly resources available to your employees so you can quickly and efficiently serve them. This can be in the form of guides, checklists, technology how-to instruction lists, flyers and emails. These physical resources can foster a deeper sense of investment in the programs and can help convey complex concepts in a more visual way, which will help engage employees in the enrollment process.

  1. Practice Clear Communication

The benefits process can be overwhelming for most employees so effectively communicating changes to benefits is key to positive employee engagement. Be sure that your employees know the deadline dates to enroll and that they have easy access to the tools and resources they need to make their elections. It will be a crazy time for you, but ensuring your employees know that you are there and available to assist them with their benefit needs will dramatically increase engagement.

  1. Ask Your Employees About Their Needs

A great way to boost morale is to give your employees a say in their benefits. Before Open Enrollment, try creating a short quiz or survey asking employees to mark what they value most. Maybe it’s a new wellness program or assistance with retirement planning. That way, you’re building positive relationships with your employees as they see you are committed to actively listening to their needs. 

  1. Lean Into Additional Advantages

Aside from the everyday tax savings and convenience that modern benefit offerings provide, it’s important to educate your employees on some of the lesser-known advantages of certain benefits. This can include soft perks like gym memberships or discounts on products and services, or more hefty benefits like HSA investment opportunities and retirement supplementation.

  1. Build a Simplified Approach

Benefits are confusing enough. That’s why it’s so important to build your organization’s culture around a simplified approach. Communicate to your employees the direct benefits they can experience and carry that positive, goal-oriented mindset in all you do. From new employee onboarding to yearly open enrollment and even weekly or monthly staff meetings, remember to give a small nod to simplicity and its impacts on benefits and beyond.

  1. Schedule a Benefit Planning Meeting

No matter the size of your organization it’s always best to plan personalized meetings with your employees to discuss plans, premiums and benefit breakdowns. Depending on the size and demographics of your staff, it may be best to schedule several meetings and time slots and to cater to topics that concern different age ranges. If you’re feeling creative, you can even offer door prizes or raffles for wellness or lifestyle-related items to increase engagement and attendance for the meetings.

  1. Follow Up

Once you’ve shared all of the valuable information you need to with your employees, follow up! Schedule time over the enrollment period to check in with your employees to see if they have any questions or need any further assistance choosing the plans that are best for their needs. This added layer of encouragement will help boost employee engagement as they are reassured that their employer is committed to their success.


Encouraging a Culture of Health

Benefits administration is a difficult task to tackle, especially during Open Enrollment season. From new plan details to changing federal regulations, it’s important to be prepared to assist your employees through what can often be a very stressful time.

As you begin to encourage your employees to examine their benefit needs, remember that you’re not alone. Clarity Benefit Solutions is an industry-leading innovator in the world of employee benefits. We take a Simply Smarter approach to help ensure you and your employees are ready for life with our state-of-the-art benefits technology, world-class customer service and a full suite of benefits solutions. To see how your organization can benefit from partnering with us, contact us today.