As we come towards the end of the year, it’s time to redesign your employee benefits to get a jump start before the next enrolment period. So much has happened during this past year with the coronavirus pandemic. We have seen a lot of movement in employee status, with some taking a leave of absence, others furloughed, and new employees hired in some cases. This means the demographics of the average work environment have changed considerably over the past months. Employers need to reevaluate their employee benefits before moving into the next open enrollment period.
Now is a good time to take stock of exactly what you will be offering your employees to meet employees’ needs and determine employer contributions.
Planning Ahead to Avoid the End-of-Year Rush
Most companies schedule their open enrolments period to end before the enrolment forms need to be submitted to their chosen benefits provider. For instance, if a company benefits plans start January 1st and end December 31st, they would most likely schedule an open enrolment period in November. However, there’s a lot of work to be done before then.
Budgets need to be finalized, plans assessed, and feedback from employees to be gathered is just the start. It’s easy to let things slide and suddenly find yourself in a rush to check all the boxes if you leave planning to the last minute.
Finalizing Your Employee Benefits Budget for the New Year
Firstly, you need to determine your health care budgets and how much you can afford in contributions. Without finalizing your budget, you could be wasting time chasing plans that are not realistic. Most benefit providers will have adjusted their limits and thresholds due to inflation; therefore, the previous years’ budget might not be adequate to provide the same level of employer contributions.