With rising costs in the group-based market, trends in health plan design stay pointed at plans with member responsibility. So now, more than ever, employers should be concerned over the effectiveness of their employee benefit communications.
Think your company is doing a great job? The 2017 Alegeus Broker and Employer Research Report finds employers are overconfident about the quality and effectiveness of their program. Employers’ perceptions fell short of consumers’ point of view on clarity of content, depth of information, communication channels, personalization and frequency of communications.
Only reaching out at annual enrollment or relying heavily on plan documents isn’t enough and without support your employees could be set up for failure. Ideally, they should be able to estimate out-of-pocket costs and understand how Consumer-Driven Health Plans (CDHPs) work alongside funding vehicles like the popular Health Savings Account (HSA) or a Health Reimbursement Arrangement (HRA).
Employers can follow these basic guidelines to maximize CDHP participation:
Follow a detailed communications strategy. Using simple messages multiple times a year will resonate. Don’t forget to make the material visually appealing – branding benefits communications and graphically portraying these difficult plans is equally important.
Use multiple communication channels. Understand your audiences and how they want to receive information. Incorporate social media, text messages and external websites into your strategy. Employees prefer to get frequent messages on the devices and sites that they use.
Leverage decision support tools. Take advantage of enrollment self-service portals to provide integrated decision support on an individualized basis. This approach, coupled with a “benefits help desk,” provides a valuable, high-touch experience.
The employee knowledge gap surrounding CDHPs and savings accounts is clear. Don’t put off your communications game plan any longer – we are more than happy to help you get the ball rolling.