3 Ways Benefitfocus Customers Shape the Future of Benefits Management

3 Ways Benefitfocus Customers Shape the Future of Benefits Management

Customers can be a company's greatest innovators -- if they're given enough of a voice.

At Benefitfocus, we work with some of the most talented and experienced benefits professionals in the world, full of innovative ideas to improve the lives of their employees. So, naturally, we want to harness that collective knowledge and turn it into real solutions.

That's why we continue to build new communities and organize channels to proactively understand the needs and desires of our customers.

In fact, this thinking is so important to our business, we formalized it into a company-wide mantra we call “Customers at the Heart.” Our entire company is rallied around a single concept: making customers central to everything we do. And that starts with listening to them.

Here are just a few of the many "listening posts" through which we’re empowering our customers to help us drive world-class benefits management. 

1. National conference

As a company that provides technology to employers and insurance carriers across the country, it's important that we provide a way for everyone in our customer community to get together so they can benefit from their collective expertise and see firsthand all that we're doing to help them succeed.

One Place is our annual national conference for HR and benefit leaders from around the country to connect and learn. Attendees get a comprehensive look at the hottest topics and latest trends in the industry, with engaging community roundtables, hands-on workshops, guest speakers, product announcements and more.

This past year's event featured over 40 sessions - covering everything from the latest research into benefit plan design and enrollment trends, to best practices for engaging and motivating employees, to a health care reform update led by one of Washington's leading experts on health policy. And of course, the always popular One Place Keynote Address, where Benefitfocus Founder and CEO Shawn Jenkins shared the company's vision for the future of benefits technology, along with the investments we're making to help our customers continue to simplify the complex and create a better benefits experience.

One Place also provides our customers with an opportunity to get hands-on training to help them maximize the value of their benefits technology. And for customers who have done exceptional work using Benefitfocus products and services, we recognize and share their success stories through our Celebrate Community Awards. This event not only gives the winners a well-deserved honor, but also provides an opportunity for others in our customer community to get ideas they can try out within their own organizations.

But customers aren't the only ones who come away inspired from One Place. The conference is an invaluable source of customer feedback for us at Benefitfocus, and helps us determine how we can improve as a technology partner.

The next One Place conference will take place March 20-22, 2018, in Orlando (many attendees add a trip to Disney World). Registration opens soon, so be sure to check this page for updates!

2. Community meet-ups

In addition to our annual conference in Orlando, our customers also have the opportunity to connect and learn with each other back home.

One Place Local events bring Benefitfocus customers from the same area together to dive deep into the issues that matter most to them. These complimentary half-day "mini-conferences" provide a fun, intimate environment for customers to hear how their local peers are shaping their benefit programs to address common challenges.

By the end of this year, we'll have held 10 One Place Locals - each in a different major U.S. city, and covering such topics as high-deductible health plan (HDHP) adoption strategies, new voluntary benefit offerings and open enrollment communication planning. 

One Place Locals also provide an opportunity for customers to see the latest updates in our product development roadmap, and get training on how they can better use their existing tools. These sessions often become powerful brainstorming exercises as customers share specific ways they've used certain features at their company. And they allow us to gather valuable feedback to influence our product development decisions.

We also have a separate One Place Local series for benefits professionals interested in joining the Benefitfocus community. These free lunchtime events cover similar topics with the same spirit of networking and collaboration. Check out the schedule here to see when we'll be in your area!

3. Online customer engagement portal

While we love interacting with our community of customers and hearing their feedback in person, we understand that they are busy people and, most of the time, they live online.

That's why we developed the Idea Community within One Place 365, which is our online customer engagement portal that provides a central hub to track projects, share documents, and communicate with the Benefitfocus team and their peers.

The Idea Community is a collaboration platform that enables customers to crowdsource and share new product concepts online. With the ability to add, review, comment and vote on enhancement ideas in one engaging discussion forum, customers use the Idea Community to help us develop a sharper vision for the future of our platform -- and inspire each other to take new and innovative approaches to benefits management.

Since the debut of the Idea Community in the summer of 2016, our customers have submitted and voted on nearly 500 ideas, resulting in approximately 30 new features being developed and released in our software to date. We can't wait to see what they come up with next!

Beyond influencing product enhancements, the collective voice of the Benefitfocus customer community has also led to the creation of an entire suite of tools designed to help benefit professionals sharpen their communication skills and strategy.

Click here to access the all-new OE Success Kit, featuring tips, templates and timelines you can use to run your next open enrollment like a professional marketing campaign!