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ONE Innovative Strategy for HUGE Open Enrollment Success

Jun 18, 2019

How often do your groups experience changes in carriers or plan designs? It’s commonplace in today’s benefits landscape. But, how do you help your groups diminish frustration points that come along with such changes?

Last fall, one of our brokers came to us with a unique challenge in this area which led us to a great strategy conversation – one of our favorite things to do. 

Today, I’m sharing this real-life example and how you can use the same strategy to significantly curb the pain for both employees and HR teams during open enrollment.

Situation: This broker had taken a group from another broker over the summer and was implementing new benefit plans on practically every line of coverage for the upcoming plan year starting January 1. The client was a 500-employee construction engineering firm and benefits are a huge part of their overall retention strategy. It was critical the group had a smooth open enrollment slated for the early part of October. 

Strategy: The broker installed freshbenies in advance of open enrollment, enabling the group to tap into our premium advocacy benefits and deliver a flawless open enrollment. 

Below are the steps to implement this strategy for the greatest impact with your groups…

1. Communicate the value of premium Advocacy for open enrollment

We partner with Alight (formerly Compass) for our premium Advocacy service. There are three key points of differentiation to share when it comes to this service and how it supports open enrollment…

  • The personal Health Pro® – the big differentiator here is the depth of education and training each Health Pro® undergoes before being assigned to their first group – all have completed higher education and receive intense training for a minimum of 9 months before helping their first member.
  • Smarter, proprietary recommendation engine – Alight has the unique ability to take national provider and claims data, and then layer it with their own ongoing research (including individual provider interviews). This gives the Health Pro® a much more accurate portrait of cost-effective, highly-rated providers to fit specific employee needs and preferences.
  • In-the-moment benefit guidance – proprietary technology coupled with high caliber Health Pros® means members receive responses to their requests much faster than with other providers.

2. Stage a mock call with the group and their Health Pro®

Once all open enrollment information is defined, go the extra mile and conduct a mock open enrollment call between the group’s HR Director and their Health Pro®

We did this for the construction engineering firm and in the course of an hour, the Health Pro® was put through her paces, answering various typical enrollment-type questions. Having been on the line for the call, I can say without any reservation that the Health Pro® did a fantastic job. Despite receiving all the plan information less than 48 hours prior to the mock call, she knew the material and was able to definitively answer the sample questions. 

6 ways Advocacy saves money for employees

She also walked the HR Director through their enrollment recommendation engine, a proprietary in-house model that asks a series of questions designed to identify the best plan options for the employee and their family. At the end of the mock call, the HR Director was completely satisfied her employees would have their open enrollment questions soundly answered by the Health Pro®.  

3. Route open enrollment calls to the Health Pro®

Having proven her capabilities in the mock call, all employee open enrollment calls were routed directly to the Health Pro®. With over 500 active employees, there was no shortage of call requests, but the Health Pro® was able to handle the call volume and effectively answer whatever questions were directed to her. This accomplished several objectives... 

  • Employees had a great open enrollment experience – even with all the plan changes at play 
  • HR was saved from the huge burden of questions from hundreds of employees
  • The broker was a superhero for implementing a low-cost, high-value, innovative solution 
  • The group had immediate engagement with their new freshbenies benefit, which jumpstarted increased utilization with other freshbenies services like Telehealth, savings networks and more
  • High utilization means great savings for employees as well as the employer’s bottom-line

To learn more about the high-touch care your clients can receive from our premium Advocacy service, click to watch this 30-minute webinar... 

Now it’s your turn. Do you have any groups that could benefit from a similar strategy? Comment below to tell me your story or email me at



Neil is Vice President of Sales for freshbenies where he strategizes with brokers and employers on how to control their healthcare dime, time and peace of mind. He previously worked for Cigna in a strategy and marketing capacity and also ran sales and marketing for a provider-owned health plan. Neil and his wife are raising three young (energetic!) sons. He can be reached at 

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Tanya Boyd
Tanya Boyd
President of Tanya Boyd & Associates

I didn’t want to go to urgent care or the ER. Using Doctors Online in my freshbenies membership, I went online to ask a doctor. The doctor responded and said to check my blood pressure. He followed up with the next day to make sure my numbers were OK. By then, the feeling was starting to go away. He told me if it persists to contact my doctor. It was great that I didn’t have to go somewhere and wait forever, and it was free.” - Kelli from Texas

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Marta from NC
Marta from NC

I’ve had a great experience using this app!

It’s very convenient with everyday life.


I use it all the time and highly recommend freshbenies to everyone!