year. Negotiating the best planrates and migrating employeesinto lower-cost alternatives areboth great ways to impact thebottom line. But there’s more thatyou can—and should—be doing,especially on the benefits decisionsupport front, to help your clientsachieve better financial outcomes.For example:
Proactively suggest health careconsumerism tools
Obviously, there’s been a recentspike in interest in telemedicinetools, so be prepared to offerthoughtful advice on that front.Also, be on the lookout for solutions that encourage employees tobecome savvier health care shoppers by going to urgent care centers instead of ERs for non-emer-gencies, using generic drugs, andbeing more vigilant about preventative care.
Suggest your clients rebrand theiropen enrollment as an importantfinancial crossroads
Bad decisions employees make
during open enrollment can cost
them and their employers thou-
sands of dollars. Help your clients
create open enrollment messaging
that’s focused on the bottom-line
benefit of each medical plan and
tax-advantaged account, using
specific dollar amounts when
possible. Provide a way for their
employees to compare plans easily,
playing out low-risk and high-risk
scenarios. Suggest messaging that
speaks bluntly about the financial
benefits of benefits: For example,
that the average employee saves
$19.65 in taxes for every $100 they
put in a pre-tax account for health
care costs (like an HSA or FSA). Or
that not taking advantage of the
401(k) match is like turning down
thousands of dollars in free money
Ask vendors to help cover benefitstechnology costs
Insurance carriers are often willingto offer technology, communicationor marketing credits to brokers(payable in a lump sum or monthly installments) to help cover thecost of new benefits communications technology. So ask everysingle carrier you work with topitch in—medical carriers, dentalcarriers, critical illness carriers, youname it. It’s in their best interestto support benefits communicationthat will educate employees abouttheir products—and possibly boostenrollment in those products.
Share smart strategies for trigger-basedbenefits communications
The key to engaging employees
and getting them to take action is
to reach out when they’re already
primed to receive your message.
With this in mind, suggest that
• Send employees messages
about making 401(k) and HSA
• Automatically send a remind-
er about using FSA dollars by the
March deadline early in the year
• Remind employees to re-assess
how much money they’ve put into
their HSAs in June, when the year
is halfway over
• Diligently promote telemed-
icine, EAPs, and other mental
health resources right now—and
communicate the importance of
getting an annual physical, once
COVID- 19 restrictions ease
4. Keep nudging your clientstowards digital solutionsInvesting in solutions that allowemployees to learn about, chooseand use their benefits convenientlyonline was a growing trend evenbefore this pandemic hit. Now,with social distancing measuresand work-from-home policies inplace, and in-person meetings andpaper enrollment no longer an option, virtual benefits education andenrollment will become a “must-have” for many companies, in theshort-term and possibly longer.
If you’re not a student of thelatest, greatest digital benefitstechnology on the market, now’sthe time to become one.
There’s no perfect formula formeeting the varied and urgentneeds of your clients right now.But if you lead with empathy,confidence, and transparency—and make it a priority to educateyourself about new strategies andtechnologies—you’ll be well onyour way to having the best 2020you can, all things considered.
Chad Schneider is Jellyvision’s vicepresident of strategic alliances.
become a ‘must-
have’ for many
companies, in the