How Next Generation Enrollment Uses Text Alerts For Open Enrollment Campaigns
Effective human resources communication is key to a company’s success and has a huge impact on its employee base. With new laws in place, deadlines to consider and sometimes confusing information to wade through, Next Generation Enrollment knows that adoption of services depends on consistent, targeted and clear messaging.
TextMarks has been our ‘secret sauce’. If you want to communicate to your employees and be ahead of the game, ahead of the curve in ways people are used to communicating, text messaging is a great way. – Jessica Foust, Next Generation Enrollment
Next Generation Enrollment (NGE) provides and maintains employee benefits plans for businesses ranging in size from fewer than 50 employees to over 40,000 employees. They help companies enroll their employees by providing the backend technology, web tools, services and support needed to sign up and learn about employee benefits. For NGE’s Marketing & Communications Director Jessica Foust, the yearly Open Enrollment period means figuring out how to effectively reach and educate employees so that they can make decisions on what is best for their families.
High Cost of Traditional Communications Channels
NGE has traditionally communicated to employees by sending email, mailing postcards and informational guides, printing infographics for clients to post in all their business locations and answering questions at their call centers. “We are always looking for innovative ways to increase adoption and have recently been recommending digital communication methods more because that is how employees are used to communicating,” says Foust. “Printing can be quite costly and more often that not, people are not thoroughly reading the materials they receive in the mail.”
Text Alerts Reminds Employees of Open Enrollment
“The idea came to us when one of our colleagues bought a car and received a text from the auto dealer with a link to a User Manual. We thought…why can’t we use text alerts for Open Enrollment? Keeping in touch with employees about their employee benefits is a year-round job. We felt mass text alerts would be an inexpensive and efficient way to work with our clients to keep connected with their employees.”
Next Generation Enrollment selected TextMarks after researching SMS services that could help them send out text alerts. They set up unique keywords for each of their clients and promoted it heavily through other communications channels, and they increased subscribers by using TextMarks HTML opt-in widget on their website. NGE also used TextMarks Master and Subgroup feature to group several keywords under a parent group, allowing them to segment their messaging and provide relevant communications. Foust and her team scheduled all their text messages in advance, saving them time.
“We used text alerts to announce the start of the annual open enrollment, to remind employees to make their elections and to alert them to new benefits related information throughout the year, which they can open and read by clicking a link within the text. We’re also sending video links and PDF documents through certain texts, when an employee requests the information.”
SMS Increases Awareness and Lowers Costs
Open Enrollment is still underway but the results are promising. Employees who opt in to receive texts are getting the message and the shift towards text is lowering costs. “We’ve been impressed with the functionality and support we’ve received from TextMarks and we are excited to see the increase in awareness from employees about how to use and appreciate their benefit plans and also what cost savings we can create for clients by eliminating the need for as many printed materials, like reminder postcards or outbound reminder phone calls.”
“To me, TextMarks has been our ‘secret sauce'” said Foust. “If you want to communicate to your employees and be ahead of the game, ahead of the curve in ways people are used to communicating, text messaging is a great way. Everything has been working wonderfully with TextMarks and we are loving the service.”
Interested in learning more about text messaging for human resources and internal communications? Contact TextMarks at 800-696-1393 or send us a message here.