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Employee Benefits Administration for In-House HR

Employee Benefits Administration for In-House HR

The number of job openings remain near an all-time high as the tight labor market in the United States continues to roll on. There is no question that virtually every employer out there is doing everything that they can to try to recruit and retain as much talent as possible as they work towards filling the roles that they have outstanding. Naturally, a big aspect of attracting employees is benefits administration.  

What is Benefits Administration?  

Employee benefits administration is the process by which the human resources department develops and administers the benefits package that will be available to your employees. The process also involves deciding which benefits will be available, what the eligibility criteria for those benefits will be, and managing the data that comes along with all of that.  

How Does an Employee Benefits Administrator Help with This?  

An in-house benefits administrator is responsible for handling the day-to-day of benefits administration. They will need to do the following:

  • Create benefit plans that are attractive to employees 
  • Set the eligibility criteria for receiving those benefits 
  • Manage the data that comes into the HR department regarding benefits selected by employees 
  • Take on extra duties during the open enrollment period (when many employees sign up for health insurance) 
  • Be available to answer any questions that employees may have about their benefits and how those benefits can be applied. 

Benefits That are Often Available 

There are certain types of benefits offered by most employers throughout the country. These benefits are viewed as an essential component to keeping employees on board and attracting new ones to fill roles as well. A few of the types of benefits are described here:  

Additionally, other types of benefits offered may include: 

  • Group Guaranteed Term Life  
  • Short- and Long-Term Disability  
  • Accidental Death and Dismemberment  
  • Flexible Spending Accounts  
  • Health Savings Accounts  

How In-House HR Administers Benefits 

Your in-house HR administrator can help ensure that benefits are properly distributed by taking a few of the following steps.  

Do a Needs Analysis 

This offers them the chance to see what kind of benefits are most demanded by employees, and how they can help meet those needs by supplying various options to those employees. 

Comply with State and Federal Regulations 

In some cases, state and/or federal regulations dictate some aspect of what an employer can or cannot do as far as benefits are concerned. It is extremely important to remain compliant with those regulations at all times. Also, new laws come into place from time to time that necessitate new flexibility in terms of how one administers their benefits. Thus, it is a good idea to check up on how those rules and regulations may apply in various situations. 

Compare Marketplace Plans 

Every employer needs to have someone on the ground who can compare marketplace plans to figure out which ones will work best for their employees. It is necessary to decide if plans will be purchased directly, or if a third-party professional employer organization (PEO) will be brought in to help. This is necessary because it may be a major time and money-saver to purchase health insurance plans through a PEO.  

Manage Benefits Digitally 

It is far past time for all HR activities to be moved onto software products and away from paper. Paper forms may be used as a backup, but the storage capacity and the accuracy that software can provide is incredibly vital. The in-house HR team should select a benefits administration software that can specifically help out their organization today. There is no doubt that such a piece of software may prove to be extremely useful to the organization moving forward. It can help automate the workflow and keep things far more organized than they otherwise would have been. 

Be Available 

Finally, an in-house HR benefits administrator must make themselves readily available to any and all employees that have questions about their benefits, their eligibility, or any other elements of the HR process that they need help with. This work is critical to helping employees who need assistance understanding all that their employer is offering them. 

When an employee needs to receive answers about the specific HR benefits that they are signed up for they need an in-house benefits administrator to help them out. The administrator can lower frustrations and tensions among those who aren't able to understand some aspect of their benefits. A company that fails to hire this type of labor could find itself dealing with benefits issues that spillover into other part of operation. 

Should You Use a Benefits Administration Company?  

When you weigh the pros and cons of using a benefits administration company, the pros almost always outweigh the cons. After all, these companies can:   

  • Save You a Considerable Amount of Time - No more wasting time trying to work through the mundane details of benefits administration on an in-house basis.  
  • Reduce Costs - You can lower the total amount of costs associated with your benefits administration process by outsourcing this work to a third-party.  
  • Reduce Liability - A benefits administration company will take on all liability for the work that they do. If there is ever a mistake made at some point in the process, the third-party company will take full responsibility for that error. 

 With everything else going on throughout your company, it is nice to eliminate a little of the workload that you have previously had to deal with. One of the quickest ways to make this happen is to work with third-party providers to administer your company benefits. 

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Benefit Administration, HR Outsourcing