28 MiMfg Magazine September / October 2022
Premium Associate Member
Creating Empowering Benefits Communication Beyond Open Enrollment
With open enrollment around the corner , it is time to revisit your employee benefits communication plan . Engaging with employees lets them see the value of their total compensation and can encourage them to use new tools .
Ask , Then Create
Survey your employees to learn how satisfied they are with their benefits , if they know how to locate benefit information .
Then , use data to check into your low and high usage areas of your benefits plan . Employees may not understand the value of certain benefits offerings or how to use them in their own lives .
From there , leverage the results to tailor your annual benefits communication plan directly to your employee base .
Benefits Communication Plans
The key to creating a productive benefits communication plan is clearly defining a few vital goals . From there , build your communications to create focused messages that people understand .
After identifying education opportunities or pain points from the survey , create a benefits communication plan . To start , identify a goal and define key communication objectives .
Three example communication objectives and topics have been provided below .
Decide the Cadence
Depending on your goals , create a communication plan that sets a cadence for communication and outlines the channels . Communication can focus on one topic for one to three months or rotate through topics and repeat them throughout the year .
Whenever possible , keep communications to short , digestible pieces to encourage engagement and avoid overwhelming your employees .
Adapt to a New Environment
Pivot your communication to fit your employee base best . Even if your business is fully functioning in-person , try experimenting with new ways to communicate , such as mobile apps , virtual benefits , annual enrollment tours , text messages , company announcements , internal meetings , e-mail and intranet . Using multiple channels can address generational preference but may also reveal new findings about how your employees interact with technology . 6
Brown & Brown is an MMA Premium Associate Member and has been an MMA member company since January 2021 . Visit online : BBrown . com .
Example Communication Objectives & Topics
Telemedicine Example objective : Increase telemedicine usage in 2023 vs . 2022 .
Examples of Communication Topics : Provider ’ s details , how to access it , general costs and what is covered .
Rationale : Nearly 6 in 10 people ( 58 %) are willing to try telemedicine for the first time if they have the option . This is a 25 % increase from two years ago when only 46 % of people were willing to try telemedicine . 1
Mental Health Example objective : Clearly lay out mental health resources available .
Examples of Communication Topics : Highlight resources , what is covered by insurance , how to find resources in-network and any other options available with your plan .
Rationale : Nearly half ( 45 %) of adults in the United States reported COVID-19 has negatively impacted their mental health due to worry and stress . 2
Source : Will Coronavirus be the Tipping Point for Telemedicine ? by Ipsos
Source : Mental Health Trends in America Due to COVID-19 by Barton Associates
Source : One-third of Employees Don ’ t Understand their Health Benefits by HR Dive
Medical Plan Example objective : Highlight all key areas of health plan benefits throughout the year .
Examples of Communication Topics : Provide short snippets that describe each health plan benefit . Remind employees how to access their health plan details . If you encourage employees to check prices on costs , provide basic direction on how to have those conversations .
Rationale : 35 % of employees admit to not fully understanding or know nothing about their health care coverage . 3