NOTE: The opinions in this article are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of Shortlister
Each year we see technology having an increasingly significant impact on the HR and benefits industry. Online management platforms are allowing employers, HR professionals, and benefits advisors to increase efficiency while granting wider access to benefits information.
With the industry embracing technology, EaseCentral conducted a survey with employers across the country to get an insider’s look at their preferences for benefits and HR software. The results show some insightful HR technology statistics for 2018.
POPULAR HR TECH FEATURES
Digitized processes reduces the possibility of error or duplicates. More than three-quarter (76%) of employers surveyed see the value in managing benefits and payroll in one platform. Most benefit administration systems have integrations with popular payroll providers. With technology in play, data entry becomes as simple as importing a census file and letting your benefits platform do the rest.
HR admins and employers also find technology to be useful for time-off tracking. Managing PTO is one of HR’s most time-consuming processes. From compliance with the FMLA, to approving or rejecting time off, filing, checking for errors, calculating hours and time accrued, it quickly becomes a stack of paperwork. Businesses are recognizing the need to navigate towards more streamlined HR processes.
HR admins aren’t the only ones who benefit; providing employees with an online portal to manage their time-off allows them to access information 24/7 through any means they choose; including smart phones, websites and other virtual platforms.
TAILORED BENEFITS ARE THE FUTURE
Employers are becoming increasingly aware that the traditional, one-size-fits all approach to employee benefits ends up costing more money. That’s one of the many reasons why 83% of companies surveyed are interested in expanding their offerings to provide tailored benefits.
According to the "State of Employee Benefits 2018 – Regional Edition" report, participation in HSA’s has increased significantly, leaping from roughly 50% in 2017 to 81% in 2018. With more companies adopting HR technology, employees have increased access to benefits information. Increasing accessibility can help employees make more informed decisions about their benefit packages. Through online portals, employees can view benefit information with their families and decide which options meet their specific needs - increasing engagement and offsetting costs in the process.
There are a plethora of HR technology platforms on the market, and figuring out which platform is best can be daunting for employers. The same concept applies for finding benefit options that can help offset rising healthcare costs. Enter the broker, the specialist who can guide the masses through the complex labyrinth of insurance. 75% of employers surveyed want to work with their current broker to offer consumer driven health plans.
Brokers understand the need to evolve their services and offerings in order to meet the demands of the market. In fact, according to a report from DirectPath, 83% of brokers have stated that employers turn to them for assistance in keeping down costs. In the wake of this, 78% of brokers have introduced new products to help employers control healthcare costs.
Additionally, brokers understand the significant role technology plays in the current landscape of benefits and HR. More than half (52%) of brokers said their success, and the success of their clients, depend on technology innovation. Employers are recognizing that combining the expertise of brokers with intuitive HR technology provide employees with additional resources to better understand their health plans.
MARKETING HR TECHNOLOGY
No matter the size of the company, employers prefer to learn about HR technology through visual content. 50% of employers surveyed with less than 50 employees prefer in-person demos to learn about benefits administration software. For employers with more than 50 employees, 40% stated they prefer learning about new HR technology through videos.
This data provides valuable insights for brokers and technology vendors alike. Whether it’s a demo, webinar, or product videos hosted on your website, video is the way to go. Additionally noteworthy is the value employers have for brokers when learning about HR systems. Technology is becoming synonymous with the benefits industry, and brokers who are up to speed on the latest and greatest in tech will have a competitive edge on the market.
These statistics depict how important benefits and HR technology has become in the industry. In 2018 and beyond the transition to online platforms will continue to accelerate. As more millennials flood the workforce, and grow into decision-making roles, the industry will become more tech friendly year over year. The result? Employers, HR managers, and benefit advisors will be better equipped to meet the demands of a constantly changing industry.
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Article By David Reid, CEO and Co-Founder of EaseCentral
EaseCentral is an online benefits enrollment platform built for insurance brokers and employers. EaseCentral makes it simple to set up and manage benefits, onboard new hires, stay compliant and offer employees one destination for all their human resources information. Started in 2012 in San Francisco by employee benefits veteran, David Reid, and web and engineering architect, Courtney Guertin, EaseCentral works with insurance brokers and small businesses to create seamless HR and benefits processes on an easy-to-use platform, and has offices in Las Vegas, Omaha, New York, and San Diego. In 2015, EaseCentral was launched on the West Coast and is among the most widely adopted, fastest growing solutions for brokers and employers in the area, with over 50,000 employers and 1.2 million enrollees.