3 Must Have Tools For A Successful Open Enrollment

Open enrollment is often associated with feelings of dread, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Usually, the reason open enrollment feels like a nightmare for many organizations is likely coming from the HR technology solution currently in place. HR technology isn’t something that businesses should compromise on, especially benefits administration technology.

Benefits technology can make open enrollment a breeze, but only if the technology is providing HR teams with the tools they need for success. Three must have tools are:


Connectivity to carrier and other HR systems of record is crucial. Manually entering and sending data to carriers, payroll, and other systems costs HR hours of valuable time. Manual data entry leaves someone stuck entering data, likely more than once across an entire HR tech stack. This method is obsolete – data should seamlessly flow between systems, so they’re always kept up to date.

Connectivity isn’t just convenient — it may save HR teams from making costly mistakes. Human error is bound to occur when manually entering data everywhere, but connectivity between systems drastically reduces the risk.

It’s important to note that connectivity isn’t one system that offers a mix of HR components. These systems, called “all-in-one” solutions, aren’t truly streamlining benefits administration. Instead, these systems, which are usually payroll-centric, can’t flex to handle unique, complex benefits rules, and limit employers flexibility with carriers and other HR technology.


In preparation for open enrollment, employers should utilize data to help them make insightful decisions. Data provides employers with a wealth of knowledge that can be used to determine which benefits employees are utilizing, which ones they’re not, and identify areas of friction during open enrollment. This is information that can go a long way in preparation for open enrollment.

Unfortunately, not all platforms allow employers to access their data. Many platforms require employers to submit tickets to get access to data. That’s a problem because that data should belong to the employer. Without built-in dashboards, analytics, and reporting functionality, making data-driven decisions for open enrollment becomes a hassle.

Self-service functionality

The best benefits technology solutions empower employees to take control of their open enrollment experience. Open enrollment is already a hectic time for HR teams — managing the onboarding process is another task that benefits technology can support HR with.

Technology with self-service capabilities is optimized for devices such as smartphones and tablets, so that employees can make important benefits decisions when and how they want. Employees are encouraged to review their choices from the convenience of their own homes, with support from their families.

As the name implies, decision support tools provide employees with the information they need to remain knowledgeable about their benefits. Decision support tools simplify the intricacies of benefits in a variety of ways, including glossaries, side-by-side plan comparisons, and instructional video clips. Since benefits can be complicated, tools that meet employees where they’re at is very beneficial for them.

Leverage better tech to simplify this year’s open enrollment

Frankly, any benefits technology that does not equip employees with connectivity, data, and self-service capabilities is a burden on HR teams. Every open enrollment season, HR teams find themselves working for the technology, rather then the technology working for them. Lackluster tech makes open enrollment a dreadful period for HR teams, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Employers – better tech is out there, and benefits administration no longer has to be a burden.

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