The benefits management process for many employers can come with a lot of baggage. The operation is costly, time-consuming and requires a lot of logistical details to account for. For the companies that don’t have the bandwidth to manage Open Enrollment (OE), and/or those who can’t afford to hire a third-party to administer it for them; they can integrate cloud-based benefits administration software within their business.
When you integrate these HR automated solutions, you will gain more than just simplifying the benefits process for your workforce. A few additional improvements that will follow include:
- The growth of employer brand which directly affects recruitment and employee retention
- HR administrators receive easy mechanisms to customize workflows, employee accounts, gather reporting and more
- The ability to scale seamlessly when business requirements and priorities shift
For when you need to transfer employee selections easier, navigate compliance, offer self-help tools to employees and more; there’s benefits administration software. Now let’s discuss the five benefits administration software features your technology should have.
The Top Benefits Administration Software Features
Benefits management applications come in all shapes and sizes. Some are cloud-based while others are located on-premise; and they all have their strengths and weaknesses in the capabilities they provide. While shopping for new technology, it is with utmost importance that you’re performing proper due-diligence on both the tools and the provider you’re interested in.
With that said, you should ensure that the benefits administration software you purchase is built with these features.
1. A built-in integration to payroll
If your business chooses to manage their benefits administration and payroll processes by manual workflows, or with technology that is limited, they are putting themselves at risk to run into a gauntlet of issues including relying on manually entering data from system-to-system. This is time-consuming to do, and if data is entered in improperly it can lead to hefty fines and other penalties incurred if you’re determined to be non-compliant by the federal government.
If you make any administrative mistakes that disrupt the coverage of employee benefits selected, or if their pay is delayed or inaccurate, you’ll also be at risk for high rates of employee churn. After all, with nearly 80 percent of the U.S. population living paycheck-to-paycheck, they don’t have the luxury for you to make mistakes that take too long to correct.
With benefits administration integrated to payroll, you will experience these improvements:
- Enhanced efficiency—system-to-system integration boosts administrative efficiencies, save hours of time and resources used to support it. With these responsibilities automated, HR can focus on higher-priority projects.
- Advanced accuracy—systems integrated together transfer the flow of data between each other in real-time. With the movement of information shared between them automatically, it removes the need to have a human input any information. Human-error and overall mistakes drop significantly when automation is introduced into workflows.
- Accessibility—HR administrators can analyze the data sent back-and-forth between systems to ensure their processes are true. And reporting come tax season becomes easier when it’s easily accessible. If you combine your technology with employee self-service tools, you can enhance the employee experience with a centralized hub that holds their data-history in benefits selected, pay stubs and other HR information.
2. Event management workflows
The process of managing employee benefits requires you to keep detailed records, navigate compliance and ensure that workflows are completed on time by all stakeholders. Operations typically dictate that events need to be created; communications—scheduled and ad hoc—need to be delivered; selections need to be made, approved and transferred to appropriate carriers within a dedicated timeframe.
It’s no wonder why 60 percent of U.S. employers feel overwhelmed by the increased demands and complexities of managing their benefits programs. Every event within benefits management must be carefully planned and executed without disruption. Whether you’re herding your workforce through OE, or need to update employee profiles due to childbirth, marriage, retirement and termination; a benefits administration tool can help you manage an array of variable-events that require updates to employee data.
The process of managing benefits can only be completed successfully when there is alignment between leadership, HR and the workforce they oversee. HR automated tools help to support greater organizational communication, transparency and increase company-wide productivity.
3. Compliance Management
When you work in the benefits administration game, you know that there is an array of regulatory hoops to jump through, including HIPPA, COBRA and FMLA to name a few. The reason you see the HR department in charge of complying with these regulations is because the entire realm of benefits covers medical authorization, labor laws, financial stipulations and other compliance-related exercises.
With a cloud-based benefits administration module, the provider you employ will be responsible in ensuring that all compliance mandates are met and updated within your solution. You can find a provider who will guarantee that if any compliance issues arise with your technology, they will ensure that a fix is employed and will pay for any fees that may arise on their mistake.
4. An enhanced administrative toolkit
Ask yourself these questions:
- Can you imagine calculating the age-banded benefits of each individual employee in your company who is eligible to enroll in the Affordable Care Act (ACA)?
- Do you know how long it takes and the steps needed to reconcile premiums?
- Are you able to customize the benefits experience for each individual employee in the organization?
- Can you quickly deduct employee selections from payroll?
- What’s your process of transferring employee selections to appropriate carriers?
- How are you gathering your reporting?
With a benefits management solution, you have access to a sophisticated toolkit that helps to create greater administrative efficiencies for employees in the HR department. Every process listed above is a time-consuming operation that can be done faster, more efficiently and accurately with automated functions implemented.
With the new-found time, you can focus your efforts on improving processes, enhancing employee/employer relationships and other items more worth your efforts.
5. High-value integrations to scale for the future
Another important feature that you need to consider when shopping around for benefits administration software, is its scalability prospects and the quality of partnerships the provider has established. You will want to find a tool that can integrate with your current technology, as well as any external products you may need in the future.
You’ll want to find a cloud-based software that features high-value integrations with insurance carriers, payroll processors, ERP systems, business intelligence tools, drug and background providers and more.
For example, if it’s apparent that your process needs a better way to transfer employee selections to their designated carriers; you will want to consider the following questions while evaluating third-party companies:
- Is the provider integrated with the carriers we work with?
- Should we consider working with new carriers to be able to utilize a specific provider?
- How does the benefits administration software combine, convert and transfer data?
- If there are issues with the technology that affect employee selections, or put the company at risk of being non-compliant, how will the provider rectify it?
- What other technology can I scale this software with in the future?
Once you find a benefits management software that meets your current needs, you will have peace-of-mind that it can be scaled seamlessly when your business requirements demand it.
The InfinityHR Benefits Management Module
The InfinityHR Benefits Management module automates critical workflows to improve processes for both HR administrators and the employee population they manage. Its built-in integration with over 300 partners creates an established connection to internal and external applications including to insurance carriers, payroll providers, brokers, ERP systems HCM platforms and more. This allows employers to secure, manage and transfer high-compliance data with ease.
With this HR automated solution, you can enhance communication and transparency company-wide. You can also navigate compliance, secure, manage and transfer high-compliance data from internal and external systems, including to insurance carriers, payroll providers, ERP systems and more.
Aside from a powerful, cloud-based Benefits Management module, InfinityHR features the following modules within the full platform:
- Core HR
- ACA Compliance
- Time and Attendance
- Payroll Processing
- Applicant Tracking System
- Performance Management
- Learning Management
- Succession Planning
Contact InfinityHR today if you are interested in learning more about Benefits Management, the full platform or if you would like to any of the modules in action.