A manufacturer’s HR communications were all over the map. Here’s how they narrowed the field.
By Annmarie Fini
From medical instruments to satellite communications, Morganite Industries’ parent company, Morgan Crucible, provides many fundamental components of the modern world’s sophisticated products. The U.K.-based company, founded in 1856, has four distinct divisions operating out of 100 manufacturing sites around the world. Morganite Industries performs specific functions for Morgan Crucible in the United States, manufacturing products from carbon, ceramics, and metal for a variety of applications. Headquartered in Raleigh, N.C., with 2,300 employees in several states across the country, Morganite Industries sought a powerful online portal to consolidate its HR functions.
Multiple Sources for Information Caused Lack of Continuity in HR
Morganite Industries engaged intranets at each business location to operate the benefits systems. The arrangement created a detachment among the offices, as well as a lack of communication between the HR department and its employees. Some employees were not even aware the intranets were available.
In addition, the company was experiencing a delay in progress and an increase in administrative costs. Benefits manager Chris Jaynes searched for answers to the company’s concerns.
“None of the intranets were large enough or cost-effective enough to disseminate messages to a particular audience. We were left wondering things like, ‘How do we deliver a standardized benefit message?’ and ‘How can we customize it for the individual business units?’ ” says Jaynes.
Morganite’s insurance company presented an electronic solution hosted by Benefitfocus that consolidated the administration process. After success with automating benefits enrollment, Morganite Industries sought a comprehensive portal that would house the entire HR department’s information and provide cohesive messaging to its business units.
Centralized HR Functionality and Communications
Benefitfocus supplied a proficient, user-friendly option for Morganite’s HR needs. The healthcare benefits software company proposed the Benefitfocus HR InTouch Application™ to Morganite Industries as an easily customizable online portal to consolidate and manage the complex decisions facing the company.
The system became the gateway for communication between Morganite Industries and its employees. The HR InTouch App synchronized tasks ranging from benefits enrollment and management to payroll integration and consolidation.
“HR InTouch provides a centralized portal to elect benefits as well as helps with HR’s administrative tasks,” says Jaynes. “The long-term vision is to get the day-to-day transactions out of the HR administrators’ roles, creating more time to make a bigger difference for the company.”
Morganite Industries will use HR InTouch to house its employee newsletter online, creating endless opportunities for innovative communication. The company plans on housing all its company training modules and employee orientation information in the portal, as well.
“By using HR InTouch to distribute our wellness newsletter, we can cut the associated costs by about 80 percent, plus archive past issues for people to view online,” says Jaynes. “We can then take the money saved and allocate it to other programs, such as wellness initiatives.”
A multilingual version of the portal will also be offered to increase the accuracy of its open enrollment for the company’s Spanish-speaking population. “Benefitfocus associates who speak fluent Spanish came on-site to assist our employees,” Jaynes adds. “It was great to receive that kind of attention.”
Positive HR and Employee Responses
The HR InTouch App, in conjunction with initiatives set forth by Morganite Industries and Benefitfocus, allowed a smooth transition to electronic processes. The companies worked together to place kiosks around the various HR centers for employees to make use of as they chose. The response to HR InTouch was overwhelmingly positive.
Morganite Industries performed an audit of dependents eligible for its benefits during open enrollment, offering additional savings to the company. The company took advantage of the Benefitfocus HR Support Center to collect dependent eligibility requirement documentation to ensure only qualified dependents were covered.
“105 unique dependents were discovered through the initial stages of the audit, and we were able to remove them from the system,” says Jaynes. “We think that HR InTouch will save enough money to pay for the audit and the implementation of HR InTouch without any trouble at all.”
In addition, HR InTouch will be able to supply the company with a proper census of the employee population with the payroll integration feature. Employees will be able to make their benefit elections online and sync deductions with payroll. The HR department can pull consolidated reports for each business location and/or individual employees. Payroll integration also handles employee terminations and immediately notifies insurance carriers for more accurate invoices.
“Everybody’s high on it. Feedback has been amazing; nobody has had anything but wonderful things to say,” says Jaynes. “Employees were highly impressed.” Jaynes received reactions ranging from, “Why haven’t we been doing this before?” to, “Excellent service and pleasant experience.”
Annmarie Fini is SVP of the employer division at Benefitfocus.