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How Well Do Your Employees Know Their Benefit Options?

Colleagues Enjoying A Coffee Break

It’s no secret that potential new hire candidates care deeply about the employee benefits they will be offered upon accepting their new role. Unfortunately, not all candidates or employees fully understand the benefits being offered to them either at onboarding or open enrollment.


While half the battle seems to be on the benefits arm of an organization’s HR team, the other half of the battle is properly communicating the benefits in a manner that allows employees to really understand what is being offered to them.


Bridge your organizational benefits communication gap by first informing employees of all their options. It also helps to break these options into categories. For example, primary insurance categories could include medical, dental, life insurance, flexible spending, retirement, and leave. Secondary or voluntary benefit categories could include pet insurance, hospital indemnity, critical illness, identity theft, or student loan consolidation, among others.


To help employees better understand the benefit options being provided, consider taking one or more of these steps prior to and during open enrollment.


Survey Employees to Gauge Level of Interest and Understanding
Employee understanding of benefit options may be better or worse than your teams initially assumes. To properly gather a consensus, start by initiating an employee survey. The survey results will give a better picture of what employees like or dislike, and what they currently understand about the benefit options. For example, not all employees may be familiar with the terms FSA or HSA and how to use them if they are elected.


Early and Regular Communication
Before open enrollment begins, preempt the enrollment period by communicating the plan options early. Find a way to quickly and easily convey plan changes or any new plan options that have been added. By taking the time to communicate with employees early, the business is showing their commitment to a successful open enrollment period and commitment to ensuring employees have all the necessary information upfront.


Drive Engagement
Preparing for open enrollment is just as stressful on the employees as it is for the HR and benefits teams who coordinate the plans. “Key drivers of engagement include consistent communication, including intranet and newsletters events and meetings…” Bringing employees together in an event or meeting to better understand the benefit program options. Digital tools are available, also, to aid in employees accessing the benefit plan options early, in addition to details and simplified realistic explanations.


Aside from offering quality benefits in which employees and candidates are interested in enrolling, ensuring employees are able to understand benefit options is crucial to open enrollment success. Contact Vensure to get assistance with open enrollment and in ensuring employees are informed prior to your open enrollment period.

Blue Collar vs White Collar PEO Needs

Blue Collar & White Collar Business Solutions

Blue Collar vs White Collar PEO Needs

When it comes to professional employer organization (PEO) services, businesses of all sizes require different ranges of organizational services to help manage their day-to-day challenges. PEOs work to simplify administrative processes, mitigate risk, lower costs, and create a happier work environment overall.

Not all businesses require the same levels or service options, however. For example, a construction company will weigh heavier in risk management and workers’ compensation while a call center-focused customer service business will require more focus on employee benefits and human resources.


Blue-collar and white-collar, terms coined in the early 1920s, evoke mental images of purely manual or hard labor vs. employees who have desk jobs. In fact, when it comes to how these organizations manage their administrative duties and human resources, there are differences that extend beyond physical labor.


Contact Vensure to learn more about our comprehensive workers’ compensation outsourcing program including workers’ compensation insurance, claims administration, and loss control. Other solution options are available, also. From payroll and employee benefits to human capital management and time and attendance tracking.


A Few Good Managers: The Small Business Challenge

Confirming Inventory In The Digital Age

Managers are often asked to promote from within, train employees to take over in their absence. And as a manager, perhaps you remember a time when you were taken under a manager’s wing and taught everything they know. Small businesses, however, don’t always have this luxury.


Promotions these days rely on more than role-based competence. In fact, managers are looking for certain qualities in future managers that include everything from humility and gratitude, to grit and lending a helping hand. This is especially true when it comes to managing a team at a smaller company. Employees regularly wear more than one hat at a time, making the managerial experience unique.


Ideally, managers would avoid promoting employees into positions where they are no longer competent in the role. This is called the Peter Principle. An example of this would be when a low-ranking employee is promoted up through multiple positions, over time, until they reach a role they are not prepared or trained to handle. Promoting to failure is not the best course of action for many employees and can lead to adverse effects including frustration, burnout, and low employee morale.


Instead, small businesses can rely on a different series of factors to identify managerial candidates and work to train them for their first supervisory role.


Delegate Freely
Small business managers and business owners are held accountable for much, if not all, of what occurs within their business. However, they are unable to control every aspect of the organization. Instead, letting employees operate semi-autonomously will not only help to build the employee’s drive and confidence, but also improve company culture and employee morale across the board.


Automate What You Can
Products, tools, and resources are being created every day to help business owners, especially small businesses, operate more efficiently. A technology that most small businesses could add to their toolbox is a human capital management (HCM) software. This is a cloud-based platform used to engage employees, improve or build company culture, and assist with employee management, administration, and recruiting. Moving to a digital platform instead of trying to manually oversee each of these individual processes will give managers time back to focus on revenue-generating activities.


Prioritize Communication
Manager/employee communication is an incredibly important aspect of any business, but even more so for small business managers. Regardless of how busy one’s schedule may be, prioritizing communication will help to ensure employees are kept up-to-date on happenings within the business, leadership team decisions, and other crucial information that will help them perform their jobs more effectively and efficiently.


Every business needs to have at least a few good managers, regardless of the business size. Even in a small business setting where one employee may have multiple responsibilities, a quality manager will help keep projects on track, customers or clients happy, and projects on budget. Contact Vensure to see how we can help keep your business focused by bringing the right people in to help manage your business.

Employer-Sponsored Tuition Assistance

Educational assistance programs, or tuition assistance, can come in many forms: Student loans, grants, scholarships, or tuition reimbursement via employer-sponsored education. For students or prospective students, oftentimes one of the main deciding factors on whether to return or continue with school, outside of time commitments, comes down to finances. Some people are lucky enough to work for an organization who supports continuing education and has added an educational assistance program into their employee benefits offerings.

This employee benefit is one where the employer pays for all or a portion of an employee’s educational expenses as they relate to tuition. While the benefits should be made available to all employees (or at least those with full-time status), traditionally the employer will impart certain requirements the student must satisfy to receive reimbursement for their educational expenses. For example, the employee may be required to hold a certain GPA, finish each class with a specific letter grade or higher, or that the courses and program directly relate to the employee’s current job.

Educational assistance programs are a great tool to market to top candidates and for encouraging existing employee retention. Retaining an existing employee is always a more cost-effective solution rather than recruiting, hiring, and training a new employee.

Contact Vensure Employer Services to learn more about educational assistance programs, employee retention, and recruiting services.

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