How To Streamline Benefits Administration Processes With Technology

Managing employee benefits can be a time-consuming process for HR managers and administrators. When going back and forth between payroll systems and benefits providers, keeping information up-to-date and accurate can be a real challenge.
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However, by leveraging benefits technology solutions, organizations can reduce processing errors, minimize administrative burden, and improve compliance, all while empowering employees to take control of their benefits.

Common Challenges Organizations Face When It Comes To Benefits Administration

Although benefits administration is a core functionality of many businesses, this doesn’t mean it’s an easy process to manage. Depending on the size of the organization and the complexity of the benefits administered being offered, there are a number of challenges that can get in the way.

Time-Consuming Manual Processes

Without the right tools or solutions in place, organizations often rely on outdated processes to administrate their employee benefits. When being overly reliant on spreadsheets and data entry, organizations often spend more time than they should to complete important benefits enrollment, education, and compliance processes. This can also lead to many more administrative errors, which take even more time to rectify.

Difficulties Managing Complicated Benefits

Some organizations put a lot of effort into making their benefits as comprehensive as possible. While this is great for employees, it can also cause major headaches for HR managers who need to be able to navigate a wide variety of vendors and third-party platforms.

Navigating Compliance Requirements

It’s important for businesses to stay on top of important regulatory standards when it comes to data management and benefits administration protocols. Incorporating important regulations like COBRA or ERISA can require quite a bit of industry knowledge and can be hard to implement without the right solutions in place.

Lack of Employee Engagement

Not all employees are well-informed when it comes to how to get the most out of their benefits coverage. This can lead to a lack of use or of benefits, which can be a negative return on the business’s investments in their employees. Many times, this is a result of a lack of benefits education, which can be hard for HR teams to plan and execute when their attention is focused on managing time-consuming administrative processes.
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Effective Ways to Use Technology to Streamline Benefits Administration Processes

Over the years, many businesses have recognized the need to streamline HR processes and improve employee satisfaction and engagement. One way to do this is to utilize more interconnected solutions to help them handle all of their employees' benefits processes.

While a benefits technology solution can be a very valuable investment, there are some important strategies you should apply to make sure you’re getting the most value out of it.

Implement a Benefits Administration Platform

You should start the process of implementing a benefits administration platform by researching all of the solutions that would be a good fit for your business. Depending on the size and complexity of your business, there are various solutions available that can help automate your HR processes while also helping to eliminate redundant manual entry processes.

Leverage Mobile Applications

An important part of helping to simplify benefits enrollment and usage for employees is thinking about your staff’s user experience. Today, many benefits technology platforms have native mobile applications to make the process easier for submitting claims or getting information about the coverage they need.
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Automate Enrollment and Life Events

Open enrollment periods are typically chaotic for payroll and HR administrators. This not only includes setting up new employees in the system but also considering lifecycle changes throughout the year, such as getting married or gaining a dependent, and their implications for employee benefits.

While typically, these changes can add a fair amount of stress when it comes to meeting deadlines, which are 30 to 60 days after the qualifying life event, using benefits technology helps you avoid walking the tight line between accuracy and fast execution of these changes.

Since all of your systems – such as your HRIS or HCM, insurance carriers, and payroll - stay interconnected, any changes that need to be made synchronize across your entire digital ecosystem. This can save literally hours of time by eliminating the need to navigate to each separate platform to make adjustments, while also reducing the stress of time-sensitive processes.

Provide Educational Resources and Support

Employees often have questions when it comes to how they can use their benefits or when making changes to existing coverage. By compiling a list of online training resources or choosing benefits technology platforms with tools like plan comparisons, videos, and interactive content, you can help give employees the benefits of education they need to make smarter decisions about when and how they use them.

Many benefits technology solutions have great resource centers that can be used and are designed to help employees get the most out of the benefits their employers provide. This includes features such as FAQs and embedded employee support tools to navigate the benefits process.

Utilize Videos

The benefits enrollment process is often text-heavy and can be quite confusing for employees. It can be a great idea to design explainer videos that help employees understand how to get set up.

Videos are great ways to give more perspective on the benefits they’re receiving and why they can be a valuable part of their total compensation. These videos don’t need to be very long but can help address many common questions, which can avoid having HR managers bogged down with additional training requests.

Start Simplifying Your Benefits Administration Processes

Having a streamlined benefits process can be an absolute game changer for HR teams and employee experience. By investing in the right technology solutions, HR and payroll managers can simplify their daily administrative tasks while helping them avoid inaccuracies, reduce manual work, and meet compliance-related deadlines.
  • Frank Mengert
    Frank Mengert continues to find success by spotting opportunities where others see nothing. As the founder and CEO of ebm, a leading provider of employee benefits solutions. Frank has built the business by bridging the gap between insurance and technology driven solutions for brokers, consultants, carriers, and employers nationwide.
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