Employers Make Progress Towards Open Enrollment Readiness

But with Q1 start dates looming, will it be enough?

NEW YORK, NY (November 1, 2018) Employee Benefit Adviser’s Open Enrollment Readiness Benchmark (OERB) score rose to 55 in September, a seven-point improvement over the August score.

Despite this progress, many employers continue to struggle with enrollment-related initiatives that carry first quarter 2019 start dates. In fact, about half of all study participants indicated that their organizations were not ready when it comes to activities such as planning/designing employee communications, reviewing compliance/eligibility issues, setting goals and documenting processes/procedures.

September’s overall score for open enrollment management came in at just 45. Companies earned relatively high marks for managing meetings with advisers/brokers (77) but they appeared to be struggling with enrolling employees (43), answering employee questions (50), documenting worker feedback (33), measuring enrollment engagement metrics (28) and boosting enrollment engagement (40).

“Many employers cite designing employee communications as a top challenge, particularly in tailoring them to the needs of a diverse workforce,” said Linda Cheung, SourceMedia’s director of research. “Employers are finding that one-size-fits-all messaging is not effective and that customized communication to specific employee populations is necessary to increase enrollment engagement.”

The Open Enrollment Readiness Benchmark is a performance benchmark that gauges how employer preparedness for annual employee benefits enrollment periods. Each month, SourceMedia Research and EBA survey more than 400 prescreened HR and benefits executives at organizations of various sizes and across multiple industries. These professionals are asked to rate their completion levels for 26 activities — from selecting health plans to reviewing enrollment metrics — that take place during the four critical phases of open enrollment: benefit plan design, enrollment preparation, employee enrollment and post-enrollment analysis. Scores range from a low of zero to a high of 100 and reflect the degree to which an employer considers itself prepared for a particular activity. The activity scores are then averaged to determine scores for each of the four phases and an overall readiness score. A complete analysis of the most recent OERB data is available here.

About Employee Benefit Adviser
Employee Benefit Adviser (EBA) is the information resource for employee benefit advisers, brokers, agents and consultants, providing the current awareness and perspective they need to anticipate changes in the marketplace and optimally serve their clients. EBA delivers a broad range of critical content, including comparative market data, legal and regulatory updates, the latest products and

services, and best practices in benefits delivery — including health insurance, vision and dental insurance, and voluntary and retirement benefits. The benefits broker community relies on EBA to stay connected through its website comment forums, its social media communities and live events.

About SourceMedia Research
SourceMedia Research is a full-service B2B market research service that draws upon SourceMedia’s market expertise and proprietary database of engaged executives to develop information and insights for clients. SourceMedia Research provides research solutions for marketers, agencies and others targeting sectors such as banking, payments, mortgage, accounting, employee benefits and wealth management.

About SourceMedia
SourceMedia, an Observer Capital company, is an innovative, growing digital business information and performance media company serving senior-level professionals in the financial, technology and healthcare sectors. Brands include American Banker, PaymentsSource, The Bond Buyer, Financial Planning, Accounting Today, Mergers & Acquisitions, National Mortgage News, Employee Benefit News and Health Data Management.

About ADP
Powerful technology plus a human touch. Companies of all types and sizes around the world rely on ADP’s cloud software and expert insights to help unlock the potential of their people. HR. Talent. Benefits. Payroll. Compliance. Working together to build a better workforce. For more information, visit www.adp.com.

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