Adopting a benefits administration and HR platform can make open enrollment easier for you and your clients. That said, you will still need to provide a level of support around the technology, especially in the first year it is implemented.
Just as you would respond to and resolve benefits challenges on paper — an enrollment mistake, billing error, confusion over deadlines — you will still play a support role with your clients and the new platform.
When it comes to supporting a tech platform, the customer service may look a little different. You will be helping your clients move their benefits online, and teaching them how to use the platform to improve both the enrollment experience and other HR tasks throughout the year.
While your benefits experience will of course remain key, a little bit of tech reinforcement will be important, too. This is why it is important to be effectively trained on your new platform, and to be confident in your ability to solve basic and common issues. It is also important that your software vendor have a robust support staff and workflow for resolving issues that you turn over to them.
With that in mind, here are three tips for supporting your clients with a new platform:
Pick up the phone
Your client shoots you a message about an enrollment issue. Maybe they need to make edits, or aren’t sure how to get a new employee onto the system. This is an easy one for you, so your inclination may be to send an email back. But in fact, your client may not be as tech-savvy as you are, and your email with instructions could just cause more confusion. Furthermore, it’s possible the client hasn’t articulated the problem effectively, which could lead to crossed wires and more challenges down the road.
The solution is to pick up the phone. A basic problem may be easily resolved over the phone, whereas it can take a lot of back and forth over email. Over the phone, you will be able to get a sense of what exactly the problem is, not necessarily what the client thinks the problem is.
This allows you to solve the problem quickly and effectively, and demonstrates a high level of customer service.
Adopt webinar technology
There are a variety of tools that allow you to screen share with clients. Some are even free. A few examples include GoToMeeting, join.me, and UberConference. Adopting one of these tools will make it even easier to help your clients with the roll-out of a new platform.
Whether you are explaining how to use the system for the first time, or helping your clients through a hiccup, you can share your screen and demonstrate how to accomplish the task.
You will both be able to see the process firsthand, allowing your client to ask questions in real-time and gain a better understanding of the software.
Take advantage of screenshots
This may sound basic, but it can save a lot of time. If you or a client has an issue that you think needs to be addressed by the software vendor, some of the above principles will also apply. While your vendor will likely be tech-savvy enough to skip the phone call, sending a screenshot of the issue you are having will allow your service team member to more easily resolve it.
A screenshot is a captured image of your screen. With a Mac, you simply press shift, command and “4” and drag the cursor across the image you are trying to capture. The screenshot will save to your desktop automatically.
With a PC, there are a few more steps. Find your Print Screen button and press it. With certain keyboards, you may have to press the “Alt” key at the same time. This will copy your screen to your clipboard. Open Paint, and paste the copied image. Save the Paint file as your screenshot.
You can send these files to your vendor partner, and they will have a better understanding of your problem and how to help.
A benefits platform has significant advantages — efficiency gains, maximized revenue, a comprehensive value proposition, a competitive differentiator — but it does require a different type of support.
By updating your support team processes to encompass a tech element, you and your clients will both be happier.