User Interface Redesign
Fresh and Open Layout
We redesigned the look of the application to be easier to read and more aesthetically pleasing, emphasizing the use of color / contrast for calls to action. We implemented better use of proximity and alignment, with an open layout to reduce clutter on busy pages. This helps the user focus on actionable items while navigating more feature rich pages.
This release incorporates a modern font style to provide a fresh and contemporary look, which also adapts well to high-resolution displays and multiple form factors. We used font size to emphasize and deemphasize the relevant parts of the page to attract users attention to the most relevant sections.
In addition to the visual design improvements, we moved to a much faster and more dynamic user interface processing engine. This results in faster page load times and dynamic page updates without unnecessary page refreshes. The added benefit will reduce the load on our back-end infrastructure by 25-35%, providing you with a faster application.
User Experience Improvements
Benefits Enrollment Flow (Employees)
We focused on the user experience of the core workflows of the platform, specifically employee benefits enrollment workflow for New Hires and Open Enrollments. We went through several internal and external user case studies and incorporated them and other user feedback. We identified opportunities to provide faster navigation and reduce the chances of human error while also retaining a welcoming, simple and seamless enrollment experience. Here are a few changes that we want to highlight:
- We added a left navigation pane with all the steps of the enrollment workflow, providing a quick visual of the overall progress
- Additional validations and visual guidance were added to guide the user to make elections
- Employees can easily move back and forth from one section to another
- Additional validations and visual guidance to drive user to make elections. For example the “Waive Plan” button is marked in red and kept at the top since it a decision to be made before getting to the plan election
- Moved enrollment forms signature captures, additional PCP information collection and arbitration agreements to the end of the flow. This allows for minimal disruption in the decision making process. Once the decisions are made, all additional information is captured
- The user is always prompted that their enrollment is incomplete, in case they navigate away in the middle of the enrollment
Improved Benefits QA Functionality (Company Admin / Broker)
We understand the need to thoroughly test the client implementation before you launch. With the “Test Your Flock” capability you can simulate and review what the employee enrollment experience will be like before you activate enrollment. This includes the ability to test the forms that are mapped. Note that the company admin will also have the opportunity to review this in the benefits section once the broker has submitted the benefits to the company admin for approval.
Top Navigation Bar (Company Admin)
We have also improved our product navigation by pulling out the “Reports” section to the main navigation bar. Based on our usage analytics and direct user feedback, the “Reports” section has now become the most commonly used section of the application as a result of our significant upgrade of this capability in Q4 2016.
Enrollment Forms Management (Company Admin / Broker)
Based on user studies and some direct user feedback, we now provide help to track which enrollment forms are pending to be sent to the carrier and those that have already been transmitted by the Company Admin / Broker.
API Based Benefits Administration Architecture
We have significantly revamped our API infrastructure to allow automated creation of a company, creation of benefits products, importing employee/dependent information, and capturing employee enrollment information. With our REST-compliant open API architecture which is adopted by all modern web-based applications, our platform is highly interoperable with other systems to enable ease of integration with carrier systems, quoting systems, payroll systems, etc. We provide a modular and robust architecture for additional product and automated services to be built upon it. We strongly believe that our API-based approach is superior than any other Benefits Administration system and provides a highly interoperable platform, which provides more choice and simplifies the complexity of multiple health benefits systems. To learn more please visit us at docs.helloflock.com/ or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Other Cool New Features
Organize Employer-Paid Group Plans
We have streamlined the plan creation flow by grouping all employer paid plans (Group Life, Group AD&D, Group STD, and Group LTD) under the same plan type of “Employer Paid Plans”.
Additional Dental/Vision Comparison Categories
We have added more categories for Dental and Vision plans to provide more information to the employee for making an informed plan decision, quickly and easily. We have added the following categories:
- Dental: Basic, Orthodontic (Deductible, Preventive, Major Restorative already there from before)
- Vision: Yearly Benefit, Materials Co-pay, Exam Co-pay(For existing cases, we recommend that our broker partners update the plan details for these additional fields or else they will appear blank.)
Scheduled Report History
Our report schedules functionality has been a great hit! To supplement this, we have added a scheduled report history which captures the last 5 weeks of the scheduled report that were delivered. This provides users with the recent week’s reports at their fingertips and also allows you to rerun a report that is up to 5 weeks old.
Month Based Waiting Period
In addition to the existing capability to set new hire waiting period for specified number days (like 1st of the month after 30 days of hire), we also now support month based waiting periods (like 1st of the month after 1 month of hire).
PCP Information for Each Dependent
We now capture PCP information for each dependent. At the end of the employee benefits enrollment flow, the employee will have the opportunity to provide the PCP ID and name information for each dependent.
Expanded “Help” Section
We have made changes to the “Help” section in the bottom right of every page.
- Users can search our knowledge base directly from within the “Help” section
- Relevant questions from our knowledge base are auto-suggested based the page the user is viewing.
- The answers can be viewed in a rich HTML interface within the support window of the main Flock application. This is great for multi-step workflows!
- Our knowledge base is continuing to grow with more and more content every week.
Offboarding Task Enhancements
Upon offboarding an employee, we have added the convenience to reassign all pending tasks for that individual to any other team member. Now, you don’t have to worry about tasks getting done when someone leaves your team.
What’s coming in the next release
Multiple Rates per Plan
We’ve added Yes/No questions such as, Smoker/Non-smoker, Wellness/Non-Wellness, etc. This will assist in spreading the manageable, allowed and costly risk factors based on an employee/spouse/domestic partner/dependent lifestyle(s) (Tobacco or Nicotine products, scuba diving, skydiving etc.)
Qualifying Life Events Flow
The Life Event flow will be changed based on our user studies and direct user feedback. We will move to a similar navigation as the new employee benefits enrollment workflow for New Hires and Open Enrollments. However, we will be collecting additional information and applying any restrictions as we do for Life Events today.
Qualifying Life Event
Approval Flow We will move to a navigation similar to that used for new employee benefits enrollment for New Hires and Open Enrollments. In addition, we will collect additional information and apply any restrictions, as we do for Life Events today.
Age Reduction Schedules
Brokers and company admins will be able to capture the correct monthly cost(s), payroll deduction amount(s) and coverage amounts for ancillary products that have an age reduction schedule (including reduced GI coverage).
Additional Enrollment Forms
We will add support to complete carrier forms for employee terminations and plan employee-only waivers.
Life Event Effective Date
We will add the capability to control effective date for life events to be either the life event date or the first day of the following month based on the life event reason.
As always, we welcome your feedback, comments, and suggestions. We look forward to working with you and making Flock the best HR first, benefits administration software available on the market, today and in the future.