By - January 26, 2018

5 Things You Should Expect from Your Benefits Decision Support Software

5 Things You Should Expect from Your Benefits Decision Support Software - thumbnail

When it comes to your benefits decision support software, some expectations are unrealistic.

For instance, you can’t expect 75% of your employee population to transition to a new health plan in its first year…or for your decision support users to reach 100% of employees.

However, at Tango Health, we’ve found that most employers have reasonable goals. In fact, Many employers don’t expect enough from their benefits decision support software.  

All too often, employers are satisfied with the wrong decision support tool because they don’t have all the key criteria they need to choose a software. In this article, we’re sharing five features you should expect from your benefits decision support software.

  1. Ease of use and a user-friendly interface

Be sure your employees don’t need to be computer experts to navigate your decision support tool. You’ll also want to make sure they can access your tool from the digital platform of their choice—whether that’s their desktop or their mobile phone.

Depending on your organization, your employee population may have a wide range of technological literacy levels…and even your most tech-savvy employee won’t prefer a complicated platform.

To ensure employees take advantage of your benefits decision support, ensure your software is easy to use and intuitive.   

  1. Swift insights for your employees

In addition to user-friendly features, you’ll also want a swift recommendation that is based on facts your employees can easily understand.

The reason is simple…

When your benefits decision support software isn’t streamlined and doesn’t explain the reason behind its recommendation, three scenarios become more likely:

  • Employees will avoid your decision support tool, remembering previous experiences.
  • Employees will abandon the tool midstream.
  • Employees won’t take the time to run different medical-spending scenarios and end up selecting the wrong health plan.

Expect swift guidance from your decision support solution. Ideally, your software should provide an initial recommendation in just a few minutes.  

  1. A personalized experience that helps employees make informed decisions

Review the data your benefits decision support software includes and which inputs your employees can edit. It’s important that your software has an accurate baseline for any recommendation it provides—and that your employees understand the importance of their baseline for estimating their next year’s spending.

Ideally, your decision support software should base decisions on an employee’s medical claims history or average medical spending based on peer data.   

The software should also allow employees to modify their baseline medical costs to include any estimated differences in spending. For example they might want to add costs for a pregnancy, MRI, or surgery they are planning.

The personalized guidance from a rich database of information will help employees choose the best plan for their needs. 

  1. Analytics for you and your team

It’s true—your benefits decision support software is designed to empower your employees.

But you should expect a software to serve you and your team as well…especially when it comes to gathering data.

Take a look at your software, and ask yourself…

  • Does my decision support tool provide analytics?
  • Does it give basic analytics, or does it provide deep insights?
  • Do these insights help me refine my open enrollment strategy?
  • Does my decision support vendor proactively communicate with me about analytics?
  1. Effectiveness for accomplishing goals

Most importantly, you should expect your benefits decision support software to help you accomplish your goals.

Whether you want employees to adopt a new plan or better understand their current benefits, there should be tangible evidence that your software is furthering your objectives. After open enrollment, you need to gather feedback about the success of your tool as well as your overall open enrollment metrics. You’ll want to see whether your decision support tool had the impact you expected.  

Discover what the National Business Group on Health has revealed about employers’ decision support tools.

Check out our white paper National Business Group on Health Survey Results Revealed: Effectiveness of Benefits Decision Support Tools.


Questioning whether you need a benefits decision support software or one that offers more? We can help! Request a demo of Tango Decision AssistTM.


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