Effective Communication and Perceived Value – Group Benefit Plans

Good CommunicationThe importance of effective communication cannot be undervalued; this is especially true when it comes to communicating your group benefit plan. It creates employee awareness of the available benefits, plan restrictions and general provisions of the plan. It also supports the company’s efforts to establish perceived plan value.

Companies invest a great deal of time and money in assessing, implementing, and providing the benefits program developed for their employees. However, employees may often overlook the importance of the benefits they are provided with, or may be unclear of their real value.  Ineffective communication can prove to be very costly as countless hours may be spent clearing up the confusion and clarifying misunderstandings with the rest of your staff.

Depending on the demographics of your employees, their perceived value of their benefit plan may be very different. An example of this would be dental care. It was once the most prized offering for employees, however for many it is ranked low on their priorities. While it still provides measurable financial relief when you need a crown or bridge, there’s an entire generation out there in no need of those costly services anytime soon. Dental plans have not changed much in the last 30 years – but dental hygiene and treatment have.  Group Benefit Plan communication should be:

  • Simple to understand and all fees and conditions clearly disclosed upfront.
  • Reference to industry terminology should be clearly explained and simple.
  • Plan changes should be communicated well in advance.
  • Employee choices should be clearly identified and explained.
  • Provide full disclosure on health care reform’s impact of benefits offered and premiums charged.

Better benefits communications creates a better understanding of benefit plans; and better understanding equals greater appreciation – perceived value.

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