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4 Tips for Communicating Benefits Changes to Employees

POSTED ON 
February 25, 2016

Ah, employee health care. One of the most important benefits that employers can offer, and yet it can be so overwhelming and confusing to switch to a new provider. 

At Brilliant Ink, we switched benefit providers and, while there have been some hiccups, ultimately it will be the most beneficial choice for our team. 

Here are a few tips for making the change as smooth as possible for your team: 

1. Share the pros with your team first. 

Does the new employee health care plan have a lower deductible? Is the website super easy to use? Are there some new perks like a commuter plan? Undoubtedly there will be concerns about the switch, so opening up the discussion on a positive note will help to smooth over any of the bumps in the road. 

And if no upside, then say so. Admit that what’s happening kinda sucks and talk about what you’ll do to make the change as smooth as possible. 

2. Be open to questions. 

Employee health care can be an emotionally charged change. The new plan could affect which doctors your employees can see or which services are covered. Answer any questions clearly and honestly and be willing to lend an ear even if there is nothing you can do to address their particular concern; sometimes listening is enough. 

If there is something you can do, all the better to show your employees that you are advocating for them! And of course, thank employees for their patience, cooperation, ongoing contributions to the company and for sticking with you through the shift. 

3. Tell the team what they need to do. 

Employees feel reassured and are more easily able to get on board when you paint a clear picture of what’s going to happen and when. Do they need to fill out forms or provide documentation? The more upfront you can be with what needs to be done on their end the better. 

4. Gather feedback. 

Once the change is complete, check in with your employees to see how things are going and how the transition went for them. If there are issues with the new employee health care plan, you can try to troubleshoot and if there were problems with the switch, it’s helpful for you to know what to do differently next time. 

Need more help? Brilliant Ink has helped some of our clients navigate the waters of employee health care and other benefit changes, and we are happy to assist

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Anna Downing
HEAD OF PEOPLE & OPERATIONS

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