Dreading Open Enrollment? You’re Not Alone

open enrollment survey 2022

Many working adults view open enrollment as a chore to be endured rather than as an opportunity to improve their family’s financial security.

How bad is it? In a recent survey by Haven Life, half of respondents would rather let their spouse have total control of the remote on Thanksgiving than spend time reviewing their health insurance and benefits options. Moreover, even many who try to make smart choices don’t fully understand their options.

“The results of our fourth-quarter survey show that even though employer-sponsored open enrollment periods are the primary way Americans purchase their insurance benefits, there is a significant educational gap within that process,” says Wade Seward, head of distribution strategy at Haven Life. “We found that 29% of those surveyed indicated they have little to no understanding of the life insurance benefits their company offers to them.”

See our other findings

Drilling into the details reveals even more dread and confusion. (Warning: What follows isn’t pretty.):

  • Eighty-six percent of adults surveyed say their company offered health insurance plans, while 12% say their company does not offer health insurance and 2% were not sure.
  • One-third of respondents have only somewhat or no understanding of the health care benefits their company provides.
  • Seventeen percent say they have somewhat or no understanding of the difference between health insurance and life insurance benefits.
  • Nearly three-fourths say their company offers life insurance benefits, while 21 say their company does not and 8% were not sure.
  • Fourteen percent of respondents whose companies offer benefits do not know when their company’s open enrollment period begins.
  • The largest group of respondents believe that less than 10% of their salary (40%) is a fair percentage to spend on benefits. The next-largest group says 10% to 20% was fair. Only 20% believed that spending more 20% of their salary on benefits was fair.
  • The largest group of respondents (25%) say they would like for their life insurance policy to pay out three to five years of their salary for their family to be financially secure. The next-largest group (17%) say six to eight years, but 7% say they wouldn’t feel their family would be financially secure regardless of the payout.

The survey results point to an opportunity for companies to make open enrollment more user friendly and provide the resources employees need to make informed decisions.

“Life insurance is key to building a strong financial foundation and security for households, so employers must ensure their employees understand their benefits and can identify need gaps – the gap between the benefits that are provided versus what is needed to establish financial security,” Seward says.

For the rest of us, setting aside time — and a bit of patience — to fully understand our options remains the best approach during open enrollment season. The good news? Applying for term life insurance, another key component of well-rounded financial protection for you and your loved ones, can be done easily online through Haven Life. Start by getting a quote today.