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By Andrew Hinchliff

Topics: Employee Benefits

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Benefits administration can take a good deal of effort and time. You need to track benefits, issue compensation for claims after evaluating them, and keep track of who’s using what.

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You may have wondered if specialized software could help you administer benefits more efficiently in your company. The answer is yes! These software solutions are designed specifically to help you overcome the challenges facing you in benefits administration.

Like almost all software markets, benefits administration is a crowded market with many different options vying for your attention. How can you choose the right software for your company?

There’s an easy answer. Look for these five must-have features!


1. An Employee Self-Service Option

Your employees are smart, capable people. There’s little doubt they can learn how to manage their benefits to some extent. After all, they should be able to quickly and easily fill in claim forms and check in on their allowances and spending for the year to date. You may even want to give them the option to revise their benefits by enrolling in new flexible benefits options or removing unwanted options.

You can give them this freedom by choosing benefits administration software that includes an employee self-service option. Better yet, it will help you free up your HR staff’s time to focus on other core activities.


2. Retirement Plan Services

A retirement plan is an important part of almost any business’s employee benefits package. Whether you offer 401Ks or some other pension plan option, including a retirement plan is a great way to both help your employees plan for their futures and attract and retain top talent for your business.

Make sure the benefits administration software you select for your business comes with retirement plan services built right in. Whether you need help ensuring the correct amounts are deducted from employee paychecks or issuing payments to retirees, your software solution should have your back.


3. COBRA Administration

The Consolidated Omnibus Reconciliation Act (COBRA) came into force in 1985. It gives employees the right to continue participating in health insurance coverage you have after they leave their jobs.

Like almost all legal aspects of managing benefits, COBRA administration can be a little bit tricky. Your benefits administration software solution should be able to give you a helping hand when it comes to managing your responsibilities under COBRA.


4. Flexible Spending Accounts

As employers look to contain the costs of benefits packages, some new options for offering benefits have been cropping up. One of them is flexible spending accounts. Instead of traditional group benefits, flexible spending accounts provide your employees with a set dollar amount for their health benefits and allow them to spend as they need to.

Flexible spending accounts allow employees to cover costs as they need them. If an employee needs thousands of dollars’ worth of dental work one year but needs to spend on healthcare after breaking a leg the next, there’s no worry. The flexible spending account covers this without the hassle of all the paperwork involved in switching around benefits.

If you use flexible spending accounts or you’ve been contemplating them for your business, you’ll want to be sure any benefits administration software you consider supports this option.


5. Performance Management

How well are your benefits performing for you? Is your pension plan growing like you want it to? Are your employees using all the benefits they have? Does the plan fit their needs or would they prefer different options, such as flexible benefits or health savings accounts?

These are all questions you should consider. Your software solution should help you answer them by offering you some form of performance management for your benefits package.

If you look for all of these features, you’ll be one step closer to finding the best software solution for your business.


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Andrew Hinchliff

With over 30 years of experience, Paymedia’s Chief Operating Officer Andrew Hinchliff is a seasoned global business leader and results-driven human capital and workforce strategist who is well-versed in human capital management, workforce management, payroll outsourcing, and benefits administration. He’s passionate about strategy and innovation and is regularly sought out for assignments that create disruptions to current business models and practices. Andrew is actively involved in coaching youth football and is an avid golfer. His strong beliefs in philanthropy have him “giving back” by volunteering for a host of charitable foundations and community-based events.

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