Major Shift in Benefits


Plan Migration

to the new lower-cost option



Number of Employees



This company had to move an entire employee population (3,000 people) from traditional PPO and HMO plans to one HDHP medical plan. It was more than a health care change. It was a culture change. HR needed to educate the C-suite down to line management about the culture shift involved.


We knew Integrys had to tell employees what was happening — honestly, early, and often. We set out on a three-year communications strategy.

Year 1 (the bulk of the work)

Series of four effective communications:

  1. Targeted leaders. Explained the “why” of the change, and gave them talking points. Emailed employees a teaser to “watch for more info.”
  2. Gave more detail. Compared the new plan with existing plans. Sent email with a link to even more detail. (For union, sent newsletters home.)
  3. Talked about the three-year plan. Assured them more HR communication was coming. Announced the new medical and prescription vendors.
  4. Focused on upcoming Benefits Enrollment. Gave them time to explore and decide. Pointed to online tools and offered assistance via many channels.

Year 2

Series of three communications focused on employees who still need to make the move.

Remind them this is the last year for PPO and HMO. Highlight HSA benefits.

Repeat messaging from prior year for details on the HDHP plan, and offer help in many ways.

Year 3 (now it’s mandatory)

Ask the holdouts early in the year why they haven’t switched. Acknowledge and address their pain points.

Send myth busters via emails, newsletters, online content, and video.

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Sample Materials

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