HR missing the mark when it comes to open enrollment, according to Namely survey

Only 27% of US employees would give their HR department an ‘A’ for open enrollment efforts, according to a new survey by HRMS provider Namely.

Whilst 57% of respondents responded that their employer prepared them “pretty well” for open enrollment, a significant 36% graded their HR department’s efforts at a ‘C’ or lower.

Additionally, only 20% of employees consult their HR representative for benefits advice, preferring to rely on advice from coworkers and family members to help them make plan selections.  

Constant changes in plans, rushing through the process and collateral that is hard to understand were identified as key reasons for employee frustration over open enrollment. Half of the employees surveyed wanted at least one month to make their selections, with baby boomers the most likely age group to want more time - perhaps due to more pressing healthcare and retirement concerns.

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The rising cost of healthcare seems to be a particular concern among employees, with 72% willing to give up other perks - like company holiday party and happy hours - in return for better healthcare benefits.

Namely hopes that its new open enrollment wizard, which will be launched in time for 2018 benefits elections, will help relieve some of this discontent. By breaking down jargon and offering side-by-side comparisons of different plans, it aims to provide employees with enough information to go at their own pace and thoroughly understand their benefits choices.  

Namely’s newly-appointed VP of benefits Matthew Monahan said “"These survey results underline the urgency for HR departments to invest in a better open enrollment experience. Employees want great benefits choices, ample time to make their selections, and a knowledgeable HR representative.

"Namely's new open enrollment technology delivers all three. I'm thrilled to join Namely to continue helping mid-sized companies maximize the return on their benefits spend."

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Kathryn Beeson

About the author…

Kathryn is the editor of hrmsworld.com. Whilst she spends a lot of her time coordinating and editing content from the HRMS World writing team, she sometimes finds time to write articles herself. Outside of work she can usually be found running, bouldering or playing squash

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Kathryn Beeson