Typical annual enrollment season is only four months away. We know you’d rather be sitting on your deck with a Mojito than thinking about what’s going to happen in October. So would we. Oh wait… this is what we do for a living.
Fact is annual enrollment will be here before we know it and we’ve already started preparing with many clients. Below are some of the tasks we’re doing now that may help you as you prepare.
Creating the communications plan:
Once you have an idea of the changes for 2013, you should start drafting your communications plan. Think through:
- What you hope to achieve (objective).
- Who can bring about your desired result (audience).
- What they need told to be motivated to action (message).
- The best way to reach your audience (vehicle).
- When to get the message across and how often (timing).
Get approval and buy-in now. Your plan will drive your communications throughout the entire AE season. So spend some quality time drafting it, then get immediate approval and buy-in from leaders throughout the organization. It will make your job of executing the plan smoother.
Gathering the communications team:
Who will execute the plan? Find the players and assign roles and responsibilities. At a high-level you’ll need:
- Executor of the plan
- Writer/content provider or subject matter expert(s)
- Designer/IT support
- Final decision-maker (ahem, tie-breaker)
You may even consider including some folks outside of HR or corporate communications to be on the team. What better way to see if your messages are clear but by running them by an actual employee?
Creating the production schedules:
Writing, coordinating, reviewing and delivering communications are probably not the only job you have for annual enrollment. Production schedules are a great way for you and the team to schedule your time with your other umpteen to do’s.
To create a production schedule, you start with the date you plan to deliver the piece of communication and work backward, slotting time for:
- Content gathering
- Design (if applicable)
- Rounds of reviews
It’s never too early to get the preparations started. And we’re always here if you need help – providing tips and tricks of the trade to help you execute communications that are “right on target.”