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Room for improvement? Ways to evaluate this year’s open enrollment

Another year, another open enrollment. We'll help you measure your success.

Another year, another open enrollment in the books. So, how did you do?

Before you turn to other benefits business, it’s time take stock of the process, evaluate what went well and where there’s room for improvement. Although it’s not easy to grade yourself, evaluating the process can pay dividends by helping you avoid making the same mistakes again and again.

How do you measure success? Start by revisiting your team’s goals for enrollment. Did you meet each objective you set out to achieve? Did your team meet established deadlines? How well did employees understand their plan offerings?

Follow these steps to make the most of your review:

 

1. Don’t wait.

While it’s tempting to turn your attention to the new plan year, the insights your team can glean immediately following open enrollment can set you up for success year-round. It’s best to gather feedback while the process is still fresh in everyone’s mind, try for one to two weeks after the end of open enrollment.

Take stock of the team’s biggest challenges, which benefits employees responded well to and any barriers to meeting established goals. With timely insights on hand, your team will be better-positioned to make data-driven decisions on the upcoming year’s employee communications strategy.

 

2. Remember, there’s always room for improvement.

Chances are, preparing for open enrollment required a significant amount of time and planning. Feedback can be hard to hear when you are so heavily invested in the process and the outcomes. Try not to take criticisms personally and instead channel the responses into developing ways the team can improve the experience next year.

Feedback can also fuel actionable conversations about where your team could use additional support. Was the enrollment process fragmented and confusing for employees? Were you delayed on presenting options to employees as you waited to hear back from a vendor? Take inventory of these instances to avoid future pitfalls.

Keep in mind that feedback isn’t always negative. This can be an opportunity to demonstrate that investing in a concierge program is paying off or that improving your communications strategy is having a positive impact.

 

3. Get feedback from beyond your HR team.

It’s important to listen to objective voices to get an honest assessment of the process. Plus, people outside HR can often give you a fresh perspective.

During this step in the process, don’t forget to get leadership’s input. Consider ways your team can improve communication with the executive suite to secure buy-in and show impact.

 

4. Consider an easy survey for quick feedback.

Make giving feedback simple with a three- or four-question survey that focuses on the key areas your team wants to improve. This is your chance to see which new improvements are having the biggest impact.

Online surveys are a convenient option for quick and simple employee feedback. Many free tools, such as SurveyMonkey, allow you to create custom and confidential surveys that are easy to distribute.

When it comes to writing questions, start with your organization’s goals. Was your team out to improve understanding of benefits options? Ask how they would rate their understanding of benefits plans, and what could possibly have made it easier next time. Did you fall short of a deadline or have late enrollees? Make sure communications and enrollment options are clear and make taking the desired actions easy for employees.

 

5. Share what you found.

Letting employees know that you value their input serves an important purpose–motivating them to share their thoughts and opinions in the future. Make sure your HR team and executive team know the steps you’ll take to build on existing success or what you’ll need to improve the process moving forward.

 

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