The customization and digitization of benefits remains a hot trend in 2020. As HR departments and benefit administrators settle into long-term remote operations, they continue to look for automation of day-to-day tasks. Two of the most popular include:

  • Workforce management tools: These applications are designed to work with your HRIS to improve and enhance the employee lifecycle. They can automate tasks beginning with your first contact with a potential employee, to onboarding, to termination and everything in between. There are programs to manage payroll, benefits, time and attendance, and employee performance. Some programs will even help minimize your compliance risk.
  • Employee benefit decision support tools: Recommendation engines walk employees through a series of questions to help them understand their benefit needs and potential risks. They can also identify an employee’s financial ability to withstand a catastrophic illness or injury. These tools work quickly and easily, which allows employees to learn more about benefits that meet their specific needs.

In a COVID-19 world, the stakes of choosing the wrong health care coverage are much higher, which means the responsibility of explaining what the plan will cover, how cost-sharing works and how employees can budget for unexpected expenses is greater than ever before. Technology merely supports and enables you to raise the bar when it comes to individual involvement with your employees; it does not replace it.

If you have questions about how you can improve your employee benefits plan to compete in 2021, talk to your broker or benefits adviser. They can help you identify areas for development and upgrade your offerings to meet the needs of employees for the coming years.