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API Connections with Carriers Critical to Benefits Administration in 2020

In today’s tight labor market, businesses are leveraging creative offerings to attract and retain talent. Yet many employers find that benefits continue to be a high-value incentive for recruitment. Accordingly, employer benefits are multiplying at record speed. 


Today’s benefits go far beyond the traditional scope of medical and dental insurance to include diverse offerings such as flexible work hours and access to telemedicine.

As employers expand their health and wellness benefits packages to win over current and prospective employees, they will need to revisit how best to seamlessly stitch together data across their systems. Adaptable, configurable technology powered by enhanced API connections with carriers will be critical to benefits oversight and decisioning in 2020.

Benefits Balancing Act
Juggling employee benefits — which can number in the dozens — certainly brings its challenges. At minimum, employers are faced with gatekeeping medical enrollment information, flexible spending amounts, retirement contributions and more — a task that usually proves to be less than entertaining. Not to mention all of the texts, emails and phone calls they field from employees, the overwhelming majority of which are benefits related.

Most human resources administrators or insurance brokers make thousands of manual enrollment and carrier adjustments per year. A company with a few thousand employees would save a hefty sum of time — and money — by switching to an automated process.

Additionally, while once a common task, employers and HR administrators still run the risk of reporting errors, or even a resulting negative employee experience. With the introduction of new human capital management (HCM) technologies and innovation, benefits administration has received a long overdue facelift. The evolution of these technologies is expected to mature and carry over into the next year.

APIs Flex Templates for Web
In 2020, the advancement of API connections with carriers will empower employers to integrate multiple applications in a secure environment, all while enabling real-time data sharing and the reduction of administrative tasks.

APIs are certainly enhancing the overall experience for everyone within an organization, but not all APIs are created equal. Be certain to evaluate the API maturity and ask yourself: Is it actually seamless? Is it easy to buy? And, even more important, is it easy to install? And finally, are there industry-specific choices along with governance around security protocols protecting employee data?

As the workforce continues to be dynamic with multi-generational employees, another point to consider is that APIs can provide access to best of breed solutions that tie to core HCM solutions and enhance the employee experience regardless of where they stand in their career journey. 

Next Best in Benefits
The next generation of benefits systems and administration will be simple, streamlined and self-service. Employers should evaluate their current systems in order to safeguard employee satisfaction and engagement, both for the short- and long-term.

As the war for talent continues, so will the need to remain competitive. With the proper tools and cutting-edge technology, companies will benefit by staying ahead of the curve. 

About the Author

Bruce Whittredge is the vice president of channel strategy at ADP.

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