What are HealthJoy’s JOY Campaign Journeys?

What are HealthJoy’s JOY Campaign Journeys?

The benefits space is flooded with point solutions aiming to solve a single problem. From EAP and telemedicine to international pharmacy offerings and second opinion services, one big issue hinders these potential problem: employees don’t use them as frequently as we want. In most cases, they’re mentioned during open enrollment and forgotten within weeks.

The same is true of cost-containment efforts. Your onsite clinic and annual biometric screening can only drive down costs if employees know they exist. Given that benefits communication usually relies on unopened flyers, emails, and posters, this strategy places an enormous burden on HR.

HealthJoy’s platform offers clients an innovative solution: JOY Campaigns. These automated and personalized communications drive engagement and keep HealthJoy, and all the benefits offered on your plan, top-of-mind.

How JOY Campaigns work

A journey is a series of custom communications designed to educate members and prompt action. Our monthly campaigns might encourage members to get a flu shot, remind them to complete an annual biometric screening, or cover annual awareness topics like breast cancer.

Other JOY journeys are core functions of the app, designed to deliver provider recommendations, begin a bill review, or discover prescription savings.

For example, we send every member a monthly campaign journey. A typical monthly campaign starts with a push notification that, when clicked, draws the user into the app. Our virtual assistant, JOY, will then lead them through a series of messages— what we call a campaign journey— usually aimed at prompting an action like booking an appointment, scheduling a screening, or reviewing a prescription for savings.


Below is an example of a preventive care campaign. The ultimate goal of this campaign is to book an annual wellness visit. Once the member clicks through to the app, they begin to chat with JOY.

The messages they see are short, clear, and direct. JOY always intersperses messages with response requests designed to drive engagement or customize the journey’s response.

Some campaigns, like those for an annual exam or flu shot, are sent to your entire member population. Others might be segmented to match your user base. For instance, we ping employees over 50 with a message about colon cancer screening, women with a message about breast cancer awareness, and men with reminders about men’s health during “Movember.”

After finishing this JOY campaign, members’ requests go to our healthcare concierge team, which follows up on any requests. Often, JOY will try to steer members to lower-cost options on her own (see HealthJoy Accelerates Your Cost-Containment Strategy).

Custom responses allow us to provide even more customization for members at scale. A campaign usually functions a bit like a “choose your own adventure” story, allowing members to pick the next step.

Below, we’ve included an example of how we map out our campaign journeys before development. You’ll see how personalized—and intelligent—these campaigns become!

Why JOY Campaigns work

Journeys helped us drive industry-leading activation and utilization. Our telemedicine benefit utilization rate, for instance, is typically around 12-15%—nearly five times the industry average. Clients regularly see activation rates above 60%.

JOY campaigns are one of the things that make those metrics possible.

For one thing, campaigns make use of the best benefits engagement tool you probably haven’t used: push notifications. Unlike email, push notifications are native to the phones employees regularly use. They’re good at cutting through the noise and prompting action in a way benefits booklets, posters, and corporate communications can’t.

For another, campaigns draw members back into our app. We help clients promote a specific cost-containment strategy and drive savings. Campaigns also serve the purpose of reminding employees about your other benefits. Once members are in the app, they’re only a few taps from their benefits wallet. There, they’ll find details on all their other benefits, from 401k to dental. In this way, JOY campaigns and our centralized benefits experience work together to drive the utilization of all your benefits.

Read our Employee Benefits Communication Guide for more.

JOY Campaigns are an integral part of every member’s HealthJoy experience. Schedule a demo to learn more about how HealthJoy can help your company today.

Employee Assistance Program Guide

EAP’s are often buried in a benefits booklet and ignored. Here, we’ll share our best tips for helping employees navigate life with the help of your EAP.

Building Trust in Your 2020 Benefits

Building Trust in Your 2020 Benefits

As humans, we don’t trust what we don’t know. Researchers have called fear of the unknown “the ultimate fear,” suggesting we’d prefer to do a thing we know will end badly than try something new without knowing the outcome. Our brains are already working hard to discourage new experiences. Add to this a consistent wave of data breaches, and it’s harder than ever to trust our personal information, whether medical or financial, to a nameless, faceless benefits company.

Building trust is a critical step to rolling out a new benefit. Employees are more likely to try something they trust, meaning this factor can drive utilization rates and cost containment efforts.

Here, we’ll explore what we know about building trust and how you can apply it to your new 2020 benefits offering.

Build trust with real-world examples

Trust isn’t a well-defined term. We’re still researching the best way to categorize, gauge, and build trust. The way we learn to trust each other, for instance, might be different than how we determine whether a brand is trustworthy. But there are some common threads.

One area of psychological research theorizes we decide to trust based on four things: benevolence, integrity, competence, and predictability. We know, too, that humans prize warmth above everything, including competence, when deciding whether to trust.

Let’s say you’re rolling out a new telemedicine benefit in 2020. Your employees might be reluctant to try a consultation from their phone. That fear might center on many things; maybe they don’t think their medical professional will be competent, or they crave a face-to-face connection. How do you put their minds at ease and build trust in your new benefit?

Tell them a story.

Brands hoping to build trust often focus on proving how well they can do something. They promote statistics highlighting their success rates, their speed, or their competence. The same is true of a new benefit offering. You might reiterate to employees that they can talk with a trained medical professional over the phone or that the consultation is inexpensive. But those facts lack the warmth of a real-life story.

To build trust in your new benefit, use social proof. Explain that a new mom with a sick baby can use her telemedicine to contact a provider, from home, in the middle of the night. If your HR department or upper management has used the new benefit themselves, ask them to share their stories in detail (see Why Employees Don’t Use Your EAP Program for more).

If the benefit is brand new, you may not have stories from your own office to share. Ask your benefits provider to share examples of member success. Make these widely available to employees, especially as you’re rolling out your new benefit. Researchers agree that first impressions are essential to building trust.

Warmth is really about humanity. Nothing humanizes a benefit like a shared story.

Read our Employee Benefits Communication Guide for more.

Make data security protocols accessible

Once a company breaches our trust, research shows, it’s difficult (and sometimes impossible) to restore.

We’re uploading more of our lives to the Internet than ever before. Yet a recent Pew Research Center poll showed 80% of Americans don’t trust companies with their data. It’s not hard to guess why: over the last decade, major players like Facebook, Marriott, Target, and Equifax have suffered very public and very widespread breaches of consumer data.

Most of your benefits, from 401k to EAP, will require an exchange of data. They’ll be touching some of the most profoundly personal data your employees could share, so trust is crucial. Knowing you’ll be fighting an uphill battle, it’s important to start establishing trust as soon as you roll out your new benefit.

To start, ask for the specifics of your benefits providers’ data security and privacy protocols. Employees may want to know how a benefits provider uses their healthcare data and how their third-party financial accounts are secured. Does your benefits provider have a page with this information that’s in plain English? Are there security badges to include alongside their logo?

Work these into benefits communications from the beginning, remembering that first impressions are essential (see How to Simplify Benefits Communication for Open Enrollment for more).

Solicit feedback often

As you work at building trust in employee benefits, you’ll need to measure progress. Employee feedback can help you identify gaps in employee trust before they widen into issues that tank utilization.

Your first indicator will be utilization, or in the case of app-based benefits, activation. Do employees trust your benefits provider enough to give it a try? Your benefits provider should be able to show you regular performance reports with these numbers and work with you to fix any poor performance.

Of course, these numbers will only show you a big-picture idea of any significant objections. To get more granular feedback, you may need to run a benefits checkup of your own. Anonymous survey tools like SurveyMonkey are a great way to solicit feedback from employees.

Once you’ve identified those gaps in trust, you can work them into your year-round communication plan. Don’t forget to ask your benefits provider for a link to their FAQ—chances are your employees have questions they’ve heard before.

Read our Employee Assistance Program Guide for more tips on making benefits work better.

Finally, remember that your benefits provider is also responsible for building trust with employees. As an HR department, you can champion a benefit, but you can’t determine your employees’ experience.

Your benefits provider should partner with you to keep employees satisfied and build trust through excellent service.

Help employees by building trust in new benefits

Any relationship requires trust to succeed, and your employees’ relationship to their benefits is no different. To drive utilization and cost-containment efforts, help them build trust in your new benefit as soon as you roll it out. Use real-world examples for social proof, outline data security protocols to overcome their fears, and keep your finger on the pulse of their concerns. Building trust in benefits is a long game, but focusing on these few factors can help you get ahead of the curve.

Make Healthcare Shoppable with Price Transparency

Make Healthcare Shoppable with Price Transparency

Surprise charges and unexpected bills don’t exactly endear employees to their health benefits. Yet for many of them, getting care means opening those bills with a feeling of dread. Our healthcare system lacks price transparency, and it’s driving up costs.

The thing is, most employees know how to shop. They just don’t, or can’t, apply those skills to healthcare. That knowledge gap matters more than ever as employees shoulder more and more of the costs of healthcare. High deductible health plan (HDHP) enrollment increased from 15% in 2007 to 43% in 2018 and total yearly out-of-pocket expenses for a family are up to $13,800 for a family. Employees need to understand how to find the best care at a fair price, because the potential costs of not doing so can be devastating.

Prices vary but don’t reflect value

In gearing up for my second Chicago winter, I’ve spent a lot of time researching boots. I knew without even looking that full-grain leather kicks would cost more than the ones made of synthetic material. I also assume that pricier boots will fit better, last longer, and hold up to my frigid daily commute better than their less-costly counterparts.

Like most of your employees, I’m used to pricing variations. I’m able to look at a pricier product and know that, within reason, that price connotes a better product. I might not choose the most expensive option, but thanks to price transparency, I can use widely-available facts to make an informed decision.

What does this extremely seasonal problem have to do with employee benefits? Here it is: Medical procedure and care prices can vary as much as 10x from facility to facility. Unlike the boots in my online shopping cart, though, healthcare isn’t priced according to value. That makes shopping necessary, but challenging.

An MRI at your local hospital might cost $5,000, while an independent facility down the street might charge $500. Small changes—one provider performing your anesthesia instead of another, for instance—could result in wildly higher prices.

Perhaps the most confusing fact is that paying more for a medical procedure doesn’t mean you’ll experience a better outcome. An inexpensive medical procedure won’t necessarily carry more risk. More often than not, it’s the intricacies of a particular health plan or a provider’s network that causes wildly swinging costs and massive bills.

Worst of all, it’s hard for most of us to predict these variations without third-party tools and deep research skills. Yet that’s what our current system requires. To get care at a fair price, we have to shop.

Lack of price transparency means shopping is key

So procedure prices vary wildly between locations, and we know those prices have no bearing on the quality of care we actually get. At the same time, more Americans than ever are on high-deductible health plans. Most of your employees won’t meet their yearly deductible, meaning a single procedure could cost them thousands of out-of-pocket dollars. To help employees navigate opaque healthcare pricing, encourage them to enthusiastically research the same way they would any other premium service (see How HealthJoy Gets in Front of Healthcare Decisions).

Let’s say your employee is having headaches and visits their general practitioner, who recommends a CT scan. Their GP is in their network, so they assume the scan is going to be inexpensive, too. But that’s not necessarily the case.

Their doctor may direct them to a CT scan in their offices or at their affiliated hospital. A procedure there may cost 10x as much as one just a few steps down the road. It all comes down to asking the right questions before scheduling that procedure, appointment, or screening. It may take a little digging, but some insurance providers and facilities can provide pricing estimates for standard procedures. Comparison tools and Google searches can make it simple to compare price estimates with feedback from real patients.

No matter how they get it done, upfront research is an essential step for employees because the total cost of that procedure impacts their out-of-pocket spending. Even more of the cost of that service is passed on to their employer.

Incentivize better choices

When employees don’t shop for healthcare, they absorb some of the cost. But an even more significant percentage is passed on to employers. In some situations, though, personal savings might not be enough to drive employees toward less expensive choices.

Maybe your employee is dedicated to a specific doctor or facility. Perhaps they’ve met their deductible and aren’t concerned with cost. Maybe they even want to burn the rest of their FSA balance before the end of the year.

In those cases, an incentive can prompt cost-saving behaviors. Consider implementing an incentive program that provides a reward when employees use your preferred pharmacy provider or partner medical facility. Perhaps they’re entered into a drawing each time they make a smart choice, or accumulate points toward a gift card of their choosing. You can also research vendor options for a more structured incentive program with less maintenance.

HealthJoy clients who add HealthJoy Rewards choose from over 100 best-practice rewards to incentivize smarter healthcare choices. We deliver a 6:1 ROI. Learn more.

How HealthJoy uses price transparency

In most cases, it’s not enough to tell employees they should shop for healthcare. The process is just too complicated. Since following through often means researching on their own, using third-party apps, or even calling facilities, can you blame them for going with the first option they find?

Over the years, we’ve learned that price transparency encourages employees to become smart healthcare shoppers. We include pricing estimates whenever members request recommendations for imaging and procedures. That’s because these services are notoriously opaque, and prices vary widely. Our platform takes the place of insurance companies’ doctor directories, and is much easier for members to use. We aim to educate our members while taking on the burden of sorting through pricing and determining the best value.

We direct members to the highest quality, best priced, and most convenient facilities based on each specific situation. We’re able to do this because our platform integrates health plan information, medical needs, member preferences, and past interactions to guide our research (see HealthJoy Accelerates Your Cost-Containment Strategy).

We can tell them what the average cost of a procedure in their geographic area should look like, and find a fair-priced facility. We’ll help employees by actually finding the recommendations, presenting them with options, and even booking the appointment for them. Should they get a surprise bill or suspect an error, our expert bill review team can coordinate, clarify, and in many cases, find opportunities to save.

Price transparency increases benefits satisfaction

Choosing a healthcare provider shouldn’t require 10X the amount of obsessive research I put into selecting new boots. But a lack of price transparency and an unclear billing system makes it impossible to find high-value care without a little shopping. By encouraging and incentivizing employees to use their shopping skills in search of healthcare, you’ll help them save money and love their benefits.