How to Tailor Benefits Plan Communications to Your Employees

Nov 23, 2015

Executing an effective strategy to communicate the group employee benefits plan is a challenge for most employers simply because there isn’t a fool-proof, one-size-fits-all strategy for everyone. Even within the same industry, there is diversity in the employee demographics. However, do keep the following points in mind when developing your communication plan as they are applicable to all groups:

  • Use simple language. This is an important feature for all employees regardless of the industry they are in. There is a lot of technical detail when a benefits plan is being outlined. The use of everyday words could help ensure no one is lost in the myriad of information.
  • Find the right communication medium. Depending on the size and demographics of your employee group, you can opt to communicate to your employees through a face-to-face PowerPoint presentation in a formal meeting. Another option is through written communication, such as a memo that’s included with their pay stubs or saved on the company’s intranet. Digital communication, such as email, may be a more viable option for organizations with multiple offices.
  • Establish a consistent frequency and tone in communication. At a minimum, an annual communication meeting should be held in addition to ongoing written communication, especially if you want to share any amendments to the benefits plan during the year. This will help boost understanding and appreciation. Also, depending on the size of your organization and complexity of your program, setting up a communication calendar might be an appropriate approach for an organization.
  • Make sure the values and culture of your organization are being reflected in the messaging. This will help attract desirable employees and retain employees who both share and exemplify your corporate values and culture.
  • Always reference your availability to answer questions in all your communication. It’s a sure bet that your employees will have questions about the benefits plan but may not be comfortable asking in a given setting. Reassure that they can talk to someone at any time.

Suffice to say, when it comes to tailoring a communication strategy for your benefits plan, understanding the unique needs of your audience will be key to success.

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