The temperatures are rising, the days are getting longer, and spring break is now in session. Yet, for HR professionals, this time of year is no vacation. The warmer months have a way of flying by, and before you know it, Open Enrollment season will be upon us once again.
If you’ve ever found yourself slammed when the fall rolls around, you’re not alone. Open Enrollment is easily the most complex and resource-intensive campaign of the year, and no two are ever quite the same.
“We’ve actually started planning for Open Enrollment in February. Getting a head start makes all the difference in being able to work the plan effectively and gain the desired results!”
~ Write On Target client
Having worked with companies like yours on benefits communications for over 25 years, we’ve found that the most successful HR communicators are the ones that start early with their planning. That’s why now is the time to get a jump on the 2019 Open Enrollment season.
Tips to get started:
- Begin with your goals. What do you hope to accomplish? Increased active enrollment, or maybe migration to a lower cost plan. How will you measure a successful campaign? Which metrics, messages, audiences or vehicles will be most important to your employee base and your organization’s leadership? Is there something new you’d like to try?
- Identify what’s changing. What must you communicate to drive informed employee behaviors? Moving employees to a high-deductible plan? Are there new requirements, like biometric screenings, to gain access to low-cost health care coverage? Has your organization merged with another company and you need to roll out a new set of consolidated benefits?
- Assess the prior year’s campaign. What worked? What didn’t? Any hiccups that you’d rather not repeat? Was the process too rushed? Identify the lessons to incorporate into this year’s approach.
- Map it out. Work back from your employee-facing deadlines to create a comfortable communications calendar and accompanying workplan for your team with key milestones clearly marked.
- Evaluate your resources. Have you allocated enough budget? Is your team headcount adequate to handle the surge that often accompanies enrollment periods? Will you handle the work in house or outsource? Do you have the right talent on staff to develop and manage the work? Do you trust your current agency and vendor partners to deliver?
- Designate owners. Identify who on your team or at your agency will be responsible for critical processes or deliverables, and clearly communicate those roles and associated expectations. If you find yourself short-handed, now is the time to onboard and integrate new partners.
By starting now and getting a jump on Open Enrollment, you’ll avoid the stress of “crunch time” and roll out a successful campaign that’s on budget, on time and on target.
Need a little help with that?
Write On Target, Inc. is a full-service HR communications agency specializing in strategic, creative communications. We work as an extension of your team to simplify complex information for you and your organization’s employees nationwide. From SPDs to mailers, and from websites to videos — our team of pro strategists, writers and designers do it all. Whether you’re looking for a little extra help or a fully outsourced solution, Write On Target is your experienced and cost-effective partner for Open Enrollment… and all your HR communications needs.