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3 min read

Open Enrollment is Here...Are You Ready?

DominionParyoll_OpenEnrollment_Oct2023The time is now. The season is here. And you can smell the pumpkin spiced lattes... Well that too! But we, like many of you, are much more focused on the Open Enrollment season. As HR professionals, we know this can be a stressful time. Here are a few key pieces of advice for these final few weeks (or maybe even days) before your enrollment goes live that will hopefully make it a smashing success!  

  1.  Communication 
  2.  Technology 
  3.  Support  

Communication is Key 

Open Enrollment, to the non-HR crowd, can be a confusing and frustrating time. They know it is important, and usually required, but there are so many competing priorities it is hard to remember the who, what, where and how of it all.  

By creating a simplified      . and engaging communication strategy around Open Enrollment, you can empower employees with the information and dates they need.  

Be aware that your workforce is likely not consuming all their information via the same channel. With five generations in the workforce, decentralized offices, at home/hybrid working environment, and deskless employees  it is time to think outside the email inbox. Finding different channels to share important information will be vital to the smooth roll out of your Open Enrollment.  

“Many individuals are unsure of what Open Enrollment is or how it affects them.  There is an understanding in the industry that nearly 3 out of 4 employees are looking for an expert to provide insight into what is the best insurance to choose. In my experience, OE is about educating all employees about benefits that the company offers to them and providing information to make the best-informed choice for them and their families. Make sure to have a communication plan in place for virtual, in person and print materials so you have the potential to reach everyone in the company. And, if possible, find a way to make it fun and interesting.”

Susan Chiles, PHR, SHRM-CP
Director of HR | Dominion Payroll  




Tech is here – Embrace it 

The average user expects to be able to complete any task within a few clicks of their mouse. To meet this ideal, an optimal user experience would present the prior year’s selection already in place and then highlight the changes or action items for this year. Incorporating a decision support tool would also go a long way in guiding employees through these complex decisions.  

Additionally, due to the nature of Open Enrollment, the majority of individuals will likely be completing their selections away from their desk. Having your enrollment program optimized for mobile is key to allowing employees to make their selections at home or on the go.  

Finally, having test users complete Open Enrollment prior to go live date will make sure the process is as user-friendly as possible. Fresh eyes are the optimal way to catch anything that may unknowingly cause friction when completing the process.  

Don’t have a great technology platform for your Open Enrollment in place? Dominion Payroll has the perfect solution and a dedicated support team to help put one in place! Learn more about our Benefit solutions today >> 



Lean on support  

Many times, members see plan documents or coverage certificates – which can be lengthy, black and white legal documents. It can make anyone’s head spin. Carriers have large marketing teams that are able to produce high quality content. 

A simple request to your broker or carrier partner can provide you with access to great materials like videos, guides, infographics, presentations and benefit examples to help break down the legal medical jargon. Embedding this information into your communications and throughout your enrollment platform will enable your employees to feel like they understand and can select the best choice for their lifestyle.  

Along with support from your partners, be sure also consider where your employees can go for internal support! Hopefully, through the steps above, you have provided them with an experience that will reduce friction – but we all know this is a high-pressure timeframe. Be sure to offer office hours, a help line or inbox for individuals to get the one-on-one help they may need.  



With Open Enrollment around the corner, and a lot of the painstaking part of benefit selection and implementation behind you, it is time to finish strong! With a comprehensive communication plan, an optimized technology solution, and employee support tools, you will create a seamless enrollment season. You’ve done a great job. Now, treat yourself to that pumpkin spiced latte – you deserve it!  

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