With many enroll­ments being forced to go vir­tu­al this year, you may feel at a dis­ad­van­tage. But, there are actu­al­ly plen­ty of rea­sons to believe a vir­tu­al open enroll­ment could be even more effec­tive for you and your clients.

IMPROVED EDUCATION

Peo­ple only tend to remem­ber 10% of what they hear and only 20% of what they read. How­ev­er, peo­ple actu­al­ly recall 80% of what they see. As you pre­pare your vir­tu­al enroll­ment pre­sen­ta­tions, make sure you work on inte­grat­ing images to com­mu­ni­cate your mes­sage. An image has a high­er chance of evok­ing an emo­tion­al response in a per­son than a set of words, writ­ten or spo­ken and with that emo­tion comes reten­tion. Lever­age every oppor­tu­ni­ty to use graphs, charts, and images to relay your message.

GREATER REACH

As you com­mu­ni­cate with your employ­ees regard­ing edu­ca­tion on ben­e­fits offer­ings or dead­lines for enroll­ment, use a form of com­mu­ni­ca­tion that is nat­ur­al for most people—text mes­sag­ing. Tex­ting for employ­ee com­mu­ni­ca­tion results in a 98% open/read rate and a 45% reply rate. Com­pare these per­cent­ages to basic email open rates of 20% and a reply rate for email of only 6% and you’ll plain­ly see that tex­ting has a far greater reach. So, if it wor­ries you that vir­tu­al enroll­ments will result in less com­mu­ni­ca­tion, don’t let it!

Anoth­er great way to lever­age this time of vir­tu­al open enroll­ments for the good is to get online with your enroll­ment paper­work by post­ing it all via an online por­tal or com­pa­ny intranet.  Employ­ees can read through the infor­ma­tion at their leisure from anywhere—phone, tablet, or lap­top. They can also eas­i­ly share it with fam­i­ly mem­bers who can read it at their con­ve­nience. More peo­ple will be able to digest the infor­ma­tion than if it had only been avail­able at a phys­i­cal enroll­ment meeting.

OPEN LINES OF COMMUNICATION

Work on cre­at­ing a sol­id foun­da­tion of com­mu­ni­ca­tion for the entire year by intro­duc­ing it dur­ing Q4’s vir­tu­al enroll­ment meet­ings. Use your company’s social media to stay in con­tact by post­ing edu­ca­tion­al info­graph­ics, ani­mat­ed videos on health and well­ness top­ics, and invi­ta­tions to webi­na­rs. Then, by the time 2021’s enroll­ment peri­od approach­es, your employ­ees will be con­di­tioned to look at your social media for com­pa­ny announce­ments and you will be set up for suc­cess as you post info on your dif­fer­ent channels.

Even though open enroll­ment looks stark­ly dif­fer­ent than in years’ past, it does have its ben­e­fits. Improved com­mu­ni­ca­tion, a greater reach, and new, open lines of com­mu­ni­ca­tion are all byprod­ucts of this inno­v­a­tive, vir­tu­al envi­ron­ment. What a great surprise!