Taking the Struggle Out of the Plan Renewal Process

Although next year may seem far away, for employee benefits purposes, it might as well be tomorrow. When employers put one renewal to bed, it’s time to start looking into next year’s renewal—if they wait until the last minute, they can’t possibly evaluate renewal options with any degree of care.

Getting a head start on the renewal process for the next year isn’t about making an immediate decision—it’s about devising a strategic plan. With this year’s renewal process fresh in their minds, employers can easily apply that same decision-making method to next year’s benefits. For example, this year may not be the right time to offer a high-deductible plan with an HRA or an HSA—but next year might be.

Employers who evaluate their enrollment options early can:

  • Take employee surveys about benefits usage and preferences,
  • Research and learn more about their benefit options available to them, and
  • Even lengthen the open enrollment period.

One fast-growing Johnson & Dugan client wanted to add benefit options for their employees living outside of California. As soon as we finished one renewal with them, we examined the options available to them for the next year. We were able to have the renewal and the rates ready far in advance—which allowed them to choose from two options instead of one—and it left enough time for a longer open enrollment period for their employees.