When managing remote employees, it’s important not to let your company’s dental plan slip through the cracks. With so much to juggle, it can be easy to do. But dental plans are too valuable to both you and your remote employees to overlook.
Here are several tips around how to not only effectively communicate your dental plan to remote employees, but also ensure they have the best coverage possible.
Communicate the Dental Plan Effectively
Effectively explaining your organization’s dental plan to remote employees can be a little tricky since they’re not able to physically attend meetings. One solution is to host a mandatory video conference that concisely explains the dental plan options and how to sign up. You might even screencast a dental plan walk-through during the meeting, showing important points such as plan design and cost, benefit information, and how to find an in-network dentist
In addition to HR’s handling of the new employee, you may also want to make sure your company’s health care broker is aware of the remote employee and see if they are willing to talk with them about their available insurance plans. If it’s appropriate, let the employee know that in addition to HR, they can contact the broker with additional questions. You may also want to see if your insurance agent or HR manager can provide remote employees with information that show the plan will work well in their area, too.
If the dental plan has an online app or digital platform, share these with remote employees, too. The more information they have at their fingertips, the better. Many plans will provide a downloadable summary of benefits that explains each benefit, answers frequently asked questions and highlights changes from year to year. If your organization’s plan provides this, share it with remote employees to help them better understand all their options.
Look for Plans That Are Customizable and Cost-Friendly
Remote employees may have unique needs you don’t know about, but can be covered by customizable plans. So, it’s important to have a plan that offers preventive services (which most do) but also basic and major dental work. Also, considering a customizable plan that allows employees to spend a little more if they want additional insurance coverage or has other special add-on options is also beneficial in considering differing needs in remote employees.
Another way companies can help to combat high dental costs is by considering dental plan options that do not count preventive appointments towards the annual maximum from year to year, so employees are encouraged to go for their regular appointments. Regular preventive care helps to find any potential problems early, reducing overall costs for both you and your employees.
Seek Plans With Large Networks of Dentists
A key factor in encouraging remote employees to use your organization’s dental insurance is making sure the plan has a large national network of dentists. You’ll also want a plan that lets employees change their dentist at any time.
Your provider should offer an online search tool that makes it easy for employees to find in-network dentists. Because remote employees may be spread out across the country, it’s best to have a carrier with the largest network possible.
Dental Plans Are Worth the Investment
Although it may take a little extra effort to get remote employees actively involved in dental insurance, it’s worth the work. As noted by the American Dental Association, a recent study shows that when employer groups spend 39 percent more on preventive dental care over six years, they also spend 86 percent less on major and restorative dental services. This ends up saving them at least 16 percent total on costs.
Managing remote employees means being receptive to their unique situations and seeking solutions that meet their needs. If your organization tries to offer dental plans that meet their individual circumstances, then team members will be much more likely to invest in the plans and use them—regardless of what office they work from.