Employers need to improve HR and benefits systems integration, survey says

Dive Brief:

  • A new survey of benefits decision makers conducted by the Employee Benefits Network (EBN) indicates that employers’ overall benefits and HR systems aren’t necessarily well integrated. 
  • Asked about how closely benefits technology systems – from enrollment to administration and wellness – are integrated, 26% said “partly” and 12% said “not at all.”
  • The EBN article points out that the complexity of healthcare reform, aka the Affordable Care Act, has done more than any recent development to boost the need for more and better benefits technology integration.

Dive Insight:

On the upside, EBN’s second annual technology survey found that 38% of respondents plan to increase their spending on technology next year, with 44% having already increased their spending from 2014 to 2015. Much of that spending is directed toward new employee portals and front-end systems to better integrate and utilize various benefits functionalities (health, retirement, voluntary benefits and more), reported EBN.

Chris Pinc, director of product management for Towers Watson’s data surveys and technology, told EBN that employers need to figure out what works best for them when it comes to benefits integration systems. “Employers first need to really understand how far they are willing to push the envelope in terms of new trends and make sure that the software that they buy is going to meet the needs of where they are right now and where they are likely to be in near term,” Pinc said.

Gerry Leonard, president, ADP Benefits Services, told EBN that employers must “watch out for the bells and whistles pitch, because there's a lot of software that will do what looks like everything under the sun." Rather, he said, it pays to figure out what servicing any new technology will entail, so there are no surprises. 



Filed Under: Comp & Benefits HR Tech & Analytics