Completing Open Enrollment Beats Debating Politics on Social Media - Vision Plan Knowledge and Importance are Up
VSP Vision Care Survey Takes Pulse of Americans on the Open Enrollment Process
Rancho Cordova, Calif. (Oct. 5, 2016) — Indifference is down and knowledge is up. That’s the word from VSP® Vision Care when it comes to the annual ritual of enrolling in insurance benefits. For the second year in a row, VSP conducted a national poll to understand how people feel about the yearly benefits selection process, commonly known as “Open Enrollment.”
VSP found that those who report “no particular feelings at all” toward completing open enrollment decreased this year, with just under half of respondents picking that option (45% down from 52% in 2015). The remaining respondents fell into one of two other groups; the larger of which was “dread” or “annoyance” (36% up from 33% in 2015). Those who look forward to open enrollment with “eagerness” or “excitement” increased somewhat, but were still a minority (19% up from 16% in 2015).
At the same time, the number of respondents who reported feeling “more knowledgeable” about their vision benefits increased by 11 points this year (66% compared to 55% in the 2015 survey). That seemed to reflect the growing sense of importance of vision care benefits revealed by the survey. In fact, the number of respondents who ranked having a vision plan as “important” or “very important” was up by 10 points this year (83% compared to 73% in 2015).
That’s good news, says VSP. As the nation’s only not-for-profit vision care company its highest priority is to advocate for regular, professional vision care for all people. Annual eye exams are part of overall health, helping to detect signs of diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and more. At the same time, vision care is typically one of the easiest and quickest options to review and select. VSP created the survey “Open Talk about Open Enrollment” to make sure “easy” doesn’t become “easy to dismiss,” and to encourage people to check the box when it comes to vision care.
The poll also probed on a number of other behaviors when it comes to completing open enrollment, some based on age and others on preference. Here’s more of what the 2016 “Open Talk about Open Enrollment” survey revealed:
You’re probably not looking forward to it.
Interestingly, while just over a third (36%) reported approaching open enrollment with “dread” or “annoyance,” more than half (53%) of respondents reported feeling “satisfied” or “relieved” when it was all said and done. A similar pattern emerged in last year’s survey. The mental impact, it seems, doesn’t really kick in until it’s all over.
Why should age matter? Your guess is as good as mine.
When open enrollment announcements come out, those over the age of 45 said they are more likely to download or set aside information to review than those under 45, who said they are more likely to talk about it with their coworkers. And nearly twice as many respondents under 45 (11%) versus those older than 45 (6%) reported “honestly, I mostly guess” as their approach to making open enrollment decisions. Those under the age of 45 were also more likely than those over 45 to choose “persistent procrastinator” in the question above.
Ranking and filing
One attempt to probe on preferences took a positive approach by asking survey respondents to rank in order what they would most like to do from a list of other annual to-dos. Open enrollment nailed the middle of the list. The consensus was this:
- Doing your taxes
- Celebrating your birthday
- 3.Completing open enrollment
- Doing holiday shopping
- Getting your yearly physical
Never would I ever
A different attempt to probe on preferences took the opposite approach, asking survey respondents to rank a list of possible things they would never ever want to do again. This time open enrollment proudly took last place. The majority preferred to eliminate the following dreaded ordeals from the rest of their lives in the following order:
- Speaking in public
- Waiting in an airport security line
- Going to the dentist
- 4.Completing open enrollment
Would you rather?
Finally, when paired with specific other activities and asked which they would rather do, the majority of respondents overall chose open enrollment over every single one of the options:
- Completing open enrollment vs. waiting in line at the DMV
- Completing open enrollment vs. debating politics with friends on social media
- Completing open enrollment vs. trying to explain the internet to your grandparents
- Completing open enrollment vs. watching another presidential debate