With the amount of time HR pros put into open enrollment season, you’d think the process would result in satisfied employees who have a solid understanding of their benefits, right? Not even close.  

VSP Vision just released a report on how employees view open enrollment, and HR pros aren’t going to like what the rank-and-file had to say.

When asked to describe how they felt about open enrollment, 33% of employees cited “annoyance” or “dread” as their primary emotions. Even worse, just 10% of workers said they were “confident” in the benefits choices they made when the enrollment process was over.

Better than allergy season but …

The VSP report also gave respondents the choice of seven seasons — holiday, bathing-suit, back-to-school, tax, open enrollment, allergy, and cold and flu — and asked them to pick which one they disliked the least.

Just 15% of employees selected open-enrollment season. To put that in perspective, 20% chose tax season, with allergy, and cold and flu season garnering 9% and 8% of the votes, respectively. That means open enrollment only narrowly edged out seasons centered around human illness.

A changing benefits landscape

The good news is that fewer and fewer employers are looking at open enrollment as an isolated event. In fact, employers that don’t focus on year-round benefits communications are becoming the minority. That means there’s less pressure on HR pros to cram everything in at open enrollment.

Of course, that’s because there’s more to do than ever before.

As Sozon Vatikiotis, the CEO of Alltrust Insurance explains:

“What is ‘open enrollment season’? It doesn’t exist for us anymore. Every season is open enrollment season now. Each day seems to be increasingly difficult with many more complexities to manage.”

If you’re looking for additional help as you prepare for this year’s open enrollment season, our affiliated website, HR Benefits Alert, has a number of resources available.

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