With HR departments across the world moving from “core” HR task of ensuring that employees are well paid and provided adequate benefits, to the strategic initiatives and providing insights for organizational decision making, the two aspects that remain the ever-present headache for companies are Payroll and Benefits Administration. More than 75% of organizations have been shifting their focus to finding cost-controlling and time-efficient measures to get these core processes performed in an efficient manner. With accounts departments to handle payroll, benefits administration becomes the headache!

With more strict regulations and laws for administrating employee benefits, it is unavoidable to get the job done using benefits administration software. But companies are still in doubts over selecting the most viable option as per their business requirements, i.e. if they should get an in-house system, outsource the job or get an online system. While getting the system in-house seem to be a costly, time-consuming and resource-intensive option, outsourcing option carries its own dilemmas with it. The only left option is to look out for Benefits Administration Software.

But how to start looking out for the option? What features you need? How to find the right option before Open Enrollments?

These all questions might haunt your mind. Here is a quick guide that will help you with must-haves of an employee benefits system..

#1. Manage Life Events

Employees undergo many life events such as marriage, divorcé, childbirth, retirement, etc. Thus, the software must be capable of managing and analyzing the different life events taking place throughout the employment lifecycle. The system must allow for open enrollments activation, enrollment communications, event creation, event management, etc.

#2. Manage Paid Time Offs

Although, your existing HR system must be capable of maintaining records of your PTOs, it is typically an important part of benefits administration and the benefits system must be capable of tracking, allocating and managing your time offs.

#3. Deal With Compliance and Employer Mandates

The list of regulatory reforms is quite longer from COBRA to HIPAA to endless employer mandates, the benefits industry seem to be overloaded with more compliance issues. Thus, you need a system that is well-updated with all the mandates and complies by all the laws and standards while making transactions. With no other organizational department in direct contact with such legal aspects, you need to be more sure about staying abreast of any new rule passed or coming into effect that may have an direct impact on the organization.

#4. Manage the Retirement Plans

To engage and retain employees, every employer must provide financial security to its employees. Thus, to keep employees aware of all matching contributions, investment options, etc. retirement management has become a must in a benefits system.

#5. Easy Integration

Since every business already has an existing HR & payroll management system, thus, your benefits system must possess the ability to easily get integrated with any system for better data transmission, thereby saving time and resources.

Other than these considerations, majorly for the companies that also operate outside US is that they must pay careful attention to the benefits laws and regulations as they widely vary nation to nation.

To conclude, the above mentioned benefits software must-haves will help you evaluate available options and make well-informed decision. It’s better to find your software before the Open Enrollments period begins later this year. The software solution will undoubtedly ease down processing as well as control costs and time facilitating businesses to focus on other strategic areas.