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annual enrollment communications: the kitchen table test

September 14, 2009

in health communication

if print communications are part of your annual enrollment communications, this year—before sending anything out—take my completely unorthodox test. you can easily administer it yourself:

  1. gather all the print materials you and your providers plan to send to employees during annual enrollment
  2. lay them out on your kitchen table
  3. step back and size up the situation

if they cover all (or even half) of the table, it’s time to rethink your approach.

the answer isn’t necessarily to put everything online. there is a place for print in annual enrollment. it just needs to be used selectively and creatively. the real answer lies in recognizing that annual enrollment isn’t the only time to talk to employees about their benefits.

because of lean budgets and lean staff, competing demands, and new initiatives, many companies wind up communicating everything during annual enrollment. unfortunately, you just can’t cram 12 months of benefits education into two weeks. you need to break apart your “choosing” and “using” communications.

concentrate your efforts on giving employees the information and tools they need to choose their benefits. help them decide which plan provides the right level of coverage and how they’ll protect themselves against unforeseen health emergencies. do they really need dental coverage? what about vision? does it make sense to reduce their weekly paycheck to contribute to the health care or dependent care flexible spending account? when your employees read their annual enrollment communications, this is where they’re looking for your help.

if the communications on your kitchen table don’t help answer these questions or direct employees to where they can find answers, scoop them up and parcel them out over the other 50 weeks in the year.

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{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Jill Sherer Murray November 11, 2009 at 2:55 pm

Right on Fran!

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