The fall open enrollment season is around the corner, and HR professionals are beginning their preparations for this busy time of year.

One piece of the open enrollment puzzle that should not be overlooked is communication.  In fact, I can make an argument that communication is the most important part of an employer’s overall open enrollment efforts.

That’s because communication affects everything from employee awareness to morale to participation to even tax savings.  However, effective communication means more than simply handing out a package of enrollment materials that employees may or may not look at.

It requires a coordinated campaign including, ideally, one-to-one employee meetings where they can learn about their benefits as they relate to their own individual situation. 

We’ve seen effective benefits communication produce positive results for employers time and time again. 

For example, we conducted a benefits enrollment/communication campaign for a large health system client during its open enrollment period.  Due to low participation, one of the client’s goals was to increase the number of employees enrolled in its FSA and HRA plans.

During face-to-face employee meetings, our licensed Benefits Representatives communicated all of the client’s core and voluntary programs and carefully explained the features of the FSA and HRA programs so employees understood their advantages.  At the end of the enrollment, participation in those plans doubled, resulting in tax savings for the employees, as well as for our client.

This fall, employers everywhere should be sure to harness the power of communication and turn their open enrollment period into a great success!

Mantz is vice president of sales at The Farmington Company, a national provider of benefits communication and voluntary benefits services.He can be contacted at or 800-621-0067, extension 6703. 



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