United Benefit Advisors Insight and Analysis Blog

Strategic Benefits Communication: The Power of Knowing your Audience—Part Two of a Five-Part Series

Posted by: Kevin D. Seeker, GBA    Mar 23, 2017 9:30:00 AM

In my last post, I discussed using employee engagement as a measurement of benefits communication success. We know employees have concerns about their financial well-being, and look to their employers for education about new and existing benefit options. This, of course, can present challenges at open enrollment, as well as year-round communication efforts.

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Topics: Open Enrollment, Sun Life Financial, group benefit plans, employee benefits advisors, benefits communication, Kevin D. Seeker, employee demographics

How to Get Employees' Attention during Open Enrollment

Posted by: Mathew Augustine, GPHR, REBC    Oct 1, 2015 12:00:00 PM

It’s that time of the year – open enrollment season is here! Insurance carriers are presenting renewals and brokers are presenting ways to alleviate the cost pressure with innovative cost management strategies. HR and benefits professionals are under pressure to think out of the box and come up with new and improved benefit programs to engage employees. Benefits administration companies are busy getting staffed, trained and ready for long hours and last-minute client decisions. And employees are getting ready for the barrage of benefits-related communications that are coming their way.

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Topics: employee engagement, employee benefits, Open Enrollment, Hanna Global Solutions, Mathew Augustine

Temporary Safe Harbor for Online Posting of SBCs

Posted by: Danielle Capilla    Sep 29, 2015 12:52:20 PM

A Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) is a four-page (double-sided) communication required by the federal government under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA). It must contain specific information, in a specific order and with a minimum size type, about a group health benefit's coverage and limitations. An SBC is required whenever application or open enrollment materials are provided to new hires or current employees. If no application or open enrollment materials are given, an SBC must be provided when the person can first enroll.

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Topics: ACA, Open Enrollment, summary of benefits and coverage, SBC, group health insurance, Danielle Capilla

IRS Allows Additional Section 125 Change in Status Events

Posted by: Linda Rowings    Oct 8, 2014 11:34:00 AM

On September 18, 2014, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2014-55 which allows employers to amend their Section 125 plans to recognize several new change in status events.

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Topics: IRS, Section 125, Open Enrollment, Notice 2014-55

Four Simple Tips for Streamlining Open Enrollment

Posted by: Michael Humphrey, MLHR    Sep 15, 2014 1:46:00 PM

Communicating the value of benefits is an age-old dilemma further complicated now that many employers are making big plan changes to comply with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). As more and more employers move to high deductible health plans, making employees aware of how to use their benefits and take control of their health care consumption will be the key to cost savings. UBA’s white paper, "A Business Case For Benefits Communications,” addresses how best to reach employees, what they need to know, and how they prefer to receive the information. However, once you have educated your workforce, how do you enroll them efficiently and effectively in your plan options? UBA Partner Mike Humphrey, Senior Benefits Advisor at The Wilson Agency, has been guiding employers through the daunting task of enrolling hundreds or thousands of employees and their dependents for years. To keep open enrollment hassle and panic-free, he offers four basic tips for employers:

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Topics: PPACA, Open Enrollment, four tips