Entertainment Partners (EP) is the global leader in payroll, workforce management, residuals, tax incentives, finance, and other integrated production management solutions for the entertainment industry. EP combines unparalleled expertise and innovative technology to enable its clients to produce the most cost-effective and efficient film, television, digital, and commercial projects. Since 2013, EP has partnered with PlanSource to provide automated employee benefits to its multiple studio groups and 12,000+ employees working across the U.S. and Canada.
We were able to roll out some pretty complex customizations and automated workflows to handle COVID-19 impacts. PlanSource is a super dynamic system, and honestly, I don’t know how we would have done this without technology.
Benefits Solutions Senior Manager, Entertainment Partners
Entertainment Partners services the entertainment industry, helping studio groups handle nearly every aspect of production and workforce management – including offering benefits to employees who otherwise wouldn’t have any. But with high employee turnover and eligibility rules and plans that vary from studio to studio, Entertainment Partners struggled to find a BenAdmin system that could handle its complex needs and 12,000+-employee size.
Adding even more complexity, EP uses a defined contribution approach to benefits. And nearly all of the 12,000+ employees it serves are on set and out in the field all year, spread across 49 out of 50 states. Educating employees on their benefits options – and getting them to realize they are even eligible at all! – was a massive struggle.
- Large, high-turnover employee population distributed across 49 states
- Complicated benefits and eligibility rules that varied from group to group
- Employees didn’t understand their benefits options – or that they were eligible at all!
- HR admin burden of managing defined contribution model and multiple detailed enrollments
PlanSource’s powerful configurability allowed Entertainment Partners to automate and streamline its defined contribution program, as well as the varied benefits and eligibility rules for different employee groups. This drastically cut down on HR admin time and helps to keep both compliance and costs in check.
Customizable reporting has been a key value for the team as well. This was especially true after COVID-19, when Entertainment Partners needed to quickly understand who was still working on set, who was on hiatus, and who had been terminated until further notice. The team was able to not only drill down for that information through PlanSource’s reporting but also pull how employees’ insurance premiums were being paid and create two custom-coded fields to track ‘Covid-19 Status’ and ‘Covid-19 Payment Method’ directly within PlanSource.
The benefits on the employee side have been even greater. The employee self-service and mobile-friendly experience have been a ‘lifesaver,’ and PlanSource’s automated communications tools have saved weeks of HR admin time, while simultaneously driving the highest response rates and engagement Entertainment Partners has ever seen. They also credit PlanSource’s educational videos – which they include in these email and text messages – as a big factor in improving employee education and decisions.
- Flexible defined contribution and rules by specific populations
- Mobile-friendly, self-service solution for employees
- Automated employee communications that include both email and text
- Free video library to help educate and engage employees on their benefits offerings
- Guided experience to help both HR and employees navigate complex enrollments
Communications are key for Christy, and the templated options within the system, matched with their customizability, continue to serve her well as she works hard to make sure studio employees are informed and educated. Using both email messaging and SMS through PlanSource, Christy also takes advantage of the educational video library, attaching these videos to her messaging, using them in open enrollment meetings, and even leveraging them online. With this, employees can easily learn how the insurance they’re being offered actually works and what the benefit is to them, without Christy having to be there to walk the through the process. In addition to the ease of communications, Christy sites that the next best part of the PlanSource software is its flexibility, citing that the reporting is incredibly customizable and she can now pull reports to garner any data she might need.
One of the most prominent applications of this for Christy is when Covid-19 hit initially. Christy had to know who was still working on set, who was on hiatus, which employees had been terminated until further notice, and she needed to know this information immediately. PlanSource’s reporting was her instant solution to break out employee status and then tunnel even further. She had to drill down to find out how their premium for their insurance was paid, how that would be effected by the pandemic, and then custom coded ‘Covid-19 Status’ and ‘Covid-19 Payment Method’ into her system, letting the software truly work for her.
Higher employee response rates and understanding of benefits
Able to now maneuver complex and
differing benefit rules differing by plans
Platform ease creates reduction
in administration effort
Open Enrollments are now easy
for HR to set up and employees to shop