- Online benefit enrollment is here to stay, but experts say that added, and more helpful, decision support tools and a focus on millennials are two trends that are critical to the online enrollment mix, according to Employee Benefits Advisor.
- EBA held its Workplace Benefits Mania conference in Las Vegas earlier this week, and a panel of experts discussed their views on what employees expect when it comes to making the enrollment process even more relevant to them.
- One panel member, for instance, said decision-support tools fall into two main categories: profiling and surgical. Profiling digs in and determines if the employee is a millennial or baby boomer and offers advice with that in mind, while surgical is a “huge, emerging” area that focuses on the details of healthcare provider selection.
David Reid, CEO of EaseCentral, a benefits administration platform that focuses on small employers, told attendees that these tools are finding their way to his clients, but even so, there continues to be an existing need for small employers, who remain "underserved by technology.”
Lisa Free-Martin, managing director of U.S. Employee Benefits Services Group, agreed and said decision tools would be more helpful if, like those used in applying for auto and home insurance, they asked about a dozen questions before offering benefits purchasing suggestions when it comes to healthcare coverage.
Regarding millennials, panel member Reid noted hat the average age of a broker is 55, but millennials are now one-third of the workforce, the largest workplace demographic group. He said that millennial buyers want information tailored to them and will "shut down a message very quickly" if it's not. He added that the "wow factor" during benefits enrollment is critical if employers want to capture the millennial generation's attention.
Millennials receive quite a bit of employer focus today, due to the generation's growing share in the workplace. When it comes to benefits enrollment, it's not enough to be automated. The process also has to offer them the type of technology they grew up using.