2019 Benefits Benchmark: 40% Of Employees Wait Until The Last Minute To Enroll

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We’re excited to share the first annual PlanSource Benefits Benchmark Report. In this report, we showcase this year’s top trends for employee benefits enrollment, benefit types offered, contribution amounts and more.

This groundbreaking annual report is based on real user data from the PlanSource benefits administration platform. The enrollment data represents trends established from the more than 92 million benefit elections that have been made in our system.

One of the most popular questions we get about our platform relates to how typical employees actually use the enrollment system. In this quick report review, we looked at trends related to when and how employees are using PlanSource to enroll in benefits during open enrollment.

Benefits Enrollment By Period

Wouldn’t it be great if employees did their homework and logged in to enroll in their benefits in a timely manner? Spoiler alert: they don’t.

Our data found that over 40% of employees wait until the last minute to complete their enrollment.

how long do employees take to enroll in benefits

Having a consistent communication plan is key to engaging employees before, during and after your enrollment period. Use multiple touch points—email, video, print materials, etc.—to reach different audiences and continue to communicate through the entire enrollment period. And don’t worry about bombarding employees with communications; by using an enrollment platform with built-in communication features, you’ll be able to easily segment out employees that have already completed enrollment and communicate directly to just those that still need to log in and enroll.

Check out our free online open enrollment kit and our open enrollment planning playbook for more tips and tools to plan and execute a flawless OE!

Time Spent On Enrollment

Many of us are familiar with the grim industry stats—employees spend less than 30 minutes reviewing benefits materials and less than 30 minutes actually enrolling in their benefits. Our data supports this general consensus, with the average time to enroll sitting at only 18 minutes.

the average time to enroll in benefits

Keep in mind—this statistic isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Rather, it serves as a benchmark on how the average employee behaves.

Take a look at your enrollment data—is it on par with this average? Are there any anomalies? For example, if employees only spend 5 minutes on enrollment, that could be an issue. Or, if employees spend over an hour on enrollment, that could be an entirely different set of issues. Look at your own data in the context to your own enrollment process and start benchmarking your own enrollment experience and how it could be improved.

Open Enrollment Trends By Date And Time

We’ve established that most employees wait until the last minute to enroll and that they aren’t spending very long on enrollment… but wait, there’s more!

We broke down the data even further to look at enrollment trends related to the top days and times for logins and enrollment.

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The early bird gets the worm—er— benefits. Monday was the peak day of the week for employees completing enrollment.

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Medical coverage with a side of fries? Most employees completed their open enrollment during work hours, with the highest volume reported around lunch time.

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Don’t discount after-work hours—more than 10% of logins happened on a weekend. On-demand information is key to making education easy and convenient.

What Does The Data Mean?

Most employees are cruising through open enrollment on their lunch break during work hours. The quick enrollment time combined with the fact that most employees spend less than thirty minutes reviewing benefits materials means that benefits communications and educational initiatives need to be clear, concise and convenient.

Be sure to download your free copy of the 2019 Benefits Benchmark Report for an in-depth review of benefits trends and insights!

Get The Report

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