Many employers are still using paper to enroll their employees even though the ability to automatically apply eligibility rules, collect elections and deliver enrollment data to carries via electronic and online systems is widely available.
With the cost efficiency of self-service technology over manual work, reduced errors in data and insurance calculations, and overall faster processing of benefits why aren’t more employers utilizing the existing technology? There are usually two answers; a lack of budget or a company culture/environment that is not suitable for this type of automation.
A number of recent trends are pointing companies in the direction of electronic benefits enrollment and administration. The following factors are adding to the faster pace of overall adoption:
- ACA compliance — Compliance with The Affordable Care Act makes it necessary for employers to have a cost-effective method of tracking elections, waivers and employee eligibility monthly, all of which electronically enrolled benefits provide. In the first quarter of the following year, when tax filing is due, a benefit administration system will be able to complete the 1094-C and 1095-C forms and assist with the electronic filing. Benefit administration systems can also support variable hour measurements for ACA compliance.
- Complete human capital management — In the past, small-and middle-market companies purchased payroll systems without consideration for the other areas of HR automation. Software as a service (SaaS) is a software licensing and delivery model in which software is licensed on a subscription basis and is centrally hosted. It is sometimes referred to as “on-demand software”. SaaS is typically accessed by users via a web browser. SaaS has become a common delivery model for many business applications, including payroll processing software, management software, human resource management (HRM), and service desk management. One of the biggest selling points for these companies is the potential to reduce IT support costs by outsourcing hardware and software maintenance and support to the SaaS provider.
- The new generation of workers — Employees known as Millennials (born between 1980 and 2000) hate working with paper. Younger workers that are accustomed to receiving information in a digital format are less likely to seek employment at companies that are still living in a paper world. Forward-thinking companies are looking to invest in solutions that offer employee self-service through HR technology.
- Mobile — Approximately 173 million people in the U.S. own a smartphone and at least half of the households in the U.S. have at least one tablet or computer. HR technology companies are looking to expand accessibility of their application by enhancing mobile experiences. While functionality is limited on smart phones, tablets have provided access to a larger audience of workers who do not have a computer.
- Private exchanges — Growth will continue in the private exchange market as employers are looking to expand choice and control costs. A benefits administration platform is typically the engine that drives a private exchange providing online enrollment and carrier connections. One such option is the Bright Choices® Exchange, an electronic platform offering a sophisticated decision support system that includes recommendation logic coupled with interactive education tools to employees. Employers can set an affordable budget that makes sense for the company while consolidating and simplifying benefits administration.
To learn more on how Paypro can help your organization with Benefits Solutions and other requirements of the Affordable Care Act please contact us or request a consultation with one of our Benefits Specialists.