What is the best method for enrolling voluntary products? Thesimple answer is the one that gets the best results for the lowestcost. If that’s true, then the real answer to the question changeswith the specifics of each enrollment.

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Some might say face-to-face enrollments are best and, in manysituations, this may be true. But if you’re enrolling only onesimple product—say a voluntary AD&D plan—is face-to-face reallyneeded? Probably not. That’s because you may be spending a lot morefor the enrollment than is really needed with only minimal (if any)improvements in the participation results.

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This is just as inappropriate as producers who always useself-enrollment for their voluntary cases. Some cases just aren’tsuited for self-enrollment. And what about the current trend towardInternet enrollments? Some people have bought into this as thelatest and greatest only to be disappointed with theresults.

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So, how do you determine the best method to use? Basically,there should be four inputs into your decision:

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The product(s) being enrolled

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The dynamics of the account

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What working conditions you can get from the employer

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The enrollment platform needed

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Let’s talk about the first two of these inputs (we’ll addressthe last two in our next article).

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Start your decision-making process by considering commonquestions about the products (see right for specifics).

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Then you can begin to craft an enrollment strategy. For example,if the enrollment is a voluntary dental plan (a product that thepublic generally is familiar with and for which participation isgenerally pretty high), then group meetings and customizedenrollment materials with either paper enrollment or onlineemployee self-enroll will be enough.

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On the other hand, let’s assume that the enrollment is for acritical illness product. The product is not something employeesunderstand nor do they know where it might fit into their owninsurance portfolio, so a group meeting with one-on-ones may be thebest way to ensure a successful enrollment. This type of enrollment(for an unfamiliar product) also suggests that severalpre-enrollment communications which present the needs addressed bythe product would be beneficial.

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Next you can start asking questions about the account itself.Think about:

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What types of individuals are employed by thatemployer?

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Are they technically savvy or not?

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Do they have access to computers at work?

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Are all the employees in one location or are there multiplelocations that must be enrolled?

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Again, by thinking about these questions you can begin toeliminate or narrow down your strategy. Obviously if the employeesat the account don’t have easy access to a computer or are nottechnically savvy, an Internet enrollment would not be ideal.However, if they are in multiple locations and use computers everyday, it might be a viable option.

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We will address the two other inputs next month and show howconsidering all the options and the enrollment specifics can helpyou design an enrollment strategy that is effective from both aresults as well as a cost/resources standpoint.

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