Sapoznik Insurance, A World Company

5 tips to streamline employee benefits education

Benefits are complicated and getting more so.  

Unfortunately, benefits education has often been reduced to a one-hour open enrollment meeting a year. Since benefits are one of the top three investments or line items (depending on how you look at it), doesn’t it merit more attention?  

Spending the time to fully educate yourself on your benefits program will positively impact the bottom line and engage your workforce. Explaining your investment will help your employees appreciate your commitment to them and show that you care about them as individuals. It will also help employees understand that their compensation is more than just what they see on a paycheck.  

Why Benefits Education is important 

In its annual U.S. Employee Benefit Trends Study for 2021, MetLife found that employees who say their employer’s benefits communications and education are easy to understand are 99% more likely to feel valued and appreciated.  

In addition, the Metlife research shows that when employees understand how their benefits work, they are 100% more likely to trust their employer’s leadership, 78% more likely to be happy with their job, and 50% more likely to be loyal to their employer. 

Your benefits advisor can and should assist your organization in establishing a year-round benefits education engagement strategy. Sending a variety of short and simple informative materials a few weeks before the open enrollment meeting is a great place to start. This will help your employees become familiar with their options and gather questions. However, that is just the beginning.  

Here are five tips to create a successful employee engagement strategy:   
  1. Record the open enrollment so employees can access year round.
  2. Create a benefits guide that includes the following categories:
    1. Featured plan offerings 
    2. Making better healthcare decisions
    3. Know your benefits
    4. Wellness journey
    5. Federal laws and disclosures
    6. Contact information from the carriers and insurance advisors
  3. Set up a communications calendar:
    1. Be concise; Use this as your message formula:
      1. The pitch: “Here’s something you may know about your benefits”
      2. The why: “This is what it is important to you.”
      3. Call to action “Here’s what you should do to learn more about this information.”
    2. Change the medium:
      1. Use flyers, emails, videos, social media, text messaging, and intranet sites
  4. Conduct quarterly lunch and learns:
    1. Survey employees on their issues/preferences and determine what topics would have the greatest impact.
    2. Choose topics that attendees will leave feeling that it was time well spent. A popular topic we are seeing is financial wellness.
  5. Provide a benefits statement, otherwise known as total compensation or reward statements:
    1. It provides a transparent look at the value of their pay and benefits package.  

By demonstrating the well-designed benefits you offer, you reinforce your position as a valued employer. It shows your company’s role in enhancing your employees’ financial security and well-being. Providing a transparent look at the benefits and educating them on the importance of them is a fantastic way to increase job satisfaction, promote company culture, and retain talented employees. 

By Ileana Miranda, Employee Benefits Consultant, Sapoznik Insurance, A World Company