As one of the country’s largest private colleges, DePaul University employees work around the clock. From full-time and part-time professors, to janitorial and food workers, the university employs a large staff that work varied hours.
It was a challenge for DePaul’s hardworking-but-lean HR team to reach all employees with detailed, personalized benefits messaging. DePaul’s HR team needed to connect with employees about their benefits 24/7, drive interest in the HDHP with HSA offering, and boost engagement during virtual open enrollment.
The question was, according to Dr. Stephanie Smith, VP and Chief Human Resources Officer for DePaul, “How do we get that extra set of arms?” They needed to be able to answer employee questions 24/7 while still having time to tend to other priorities.
DePaul implemented the ALEX benefits engagement platform so they could direct employees to ALEX for immediate answers to their benefits questions, any time they arise. In addition to answering questions during open enrollment, ALEX could engages DePaul employees and drive smart choices throughout the year. Lastly, ALEX could also help explain the value of the HDHP in a way that would hold people’s interest.
What ALEX allowed us to do is say, if you can’t get a hold of a benefits specialist, here’s a tool that will literally help you navigate through our medical plans and give you all that information. In the end, it’s going to tell you based on how you answered these questions, ‘you should look at this plan,’ and in an entertaining way — we didn’t bore people half to death.”Dr. Stephanie Smith
VP of human resources and chief human resources officer for DePaul University
ALEX has been a hit at DePaul, where it’s helped to reach more people during virtual open enrollment.
“I've always liked the fact that Jellyvision has always stood on the platform of, ‘it doesn't have to be boring.’ I mean I, I can tell you, having been through a few orientations myself, especially by midday, eyes glazed over, you’d rather be anywhere else,” Dr. Smith says. “People appreciate the delivery, the succinctness of the information, and the ability to help them navigate to a decision.”
Moving forward, ALEX will ensure DePaul can reach remote employees. Plus, Dr. Smith says, with ALEX, you know your employees aren’t bored while learning about their benefits.
“People are just delighted by that little character,” she says. “People are so used to the experience of choosing their benefits being doldrums, but it’s just been a delight with ALEX.”
Year by year, DePaul has had more participants choosing the HDHP option. With ALEX, employees said they would contribute more than the national average to their HSAs and more than they initially thought to their retirement accounts. On top of that, employees aren’t asking the same questions repeatedly to HR, and they don’t have to wait for a benefits counselor to call them back for an answer.
“I think that that's the real benefit, you know — it's at your disposal at any time,” Dr. Smith says.
Thank you so much. I needed this. I had no idea what direction to go with, and it helped me make the right decision.”Employee DePaul University
The assistance helping to estimate medical costs for the upcoming year was very helpful.”Employee DePaul University