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Customer Panel: Leveraging Fluid Benefits Enrollment


Tammy Boyles, Project Management Director for Oracle PeopleSoft, led a customer panel about the implementation process, challenges faced, executive buy-in process, change management process, configuration, lessons learned, and future plans for customers that have implemented Fluid Benefits Enrollment and Fluid Benefits Statements.

Members of the Customer Panel

The panel included:

  • Kimberly Landmann, Business Analyst at College of Lake County
  • Tracy Sewell, Employee Benefits Manager at County of Ventura and President-Elect for the Oracle Public Sector User Group Board

The College of Lake County, made up of 2,000 employees, is located in Grayslake, IL. The college is on PeopleSoft HCM 9.2 PI 29 and PeopleTools 8.55.12. College of Lake County went live with Fluid Open Enrollment in May of 2019. The college also leverages DB2 Database.

The County of Ventura, made up of 9,000 employees and 850,000 residents, was established in 1873. The county is on PeopleSoft HCM 9.2 PI 29 and PeopleTools 8.56.1. The County of Ventura went live with Fluid in January of 2019. The county also leverages ODA Database.

Topics of the Fluid Benefits Enrollment Customer Panel

Topic No. 1: Implementation

For the College of Lake County, the Fluid Benefits Enrollment implementation took roughly a month and a half – including building, testing, and going live with open enrollment in May 2019. The college only has one dedicated IT resource. Of each day during the implementation, about 75 percent of the day was spent on Fluid Open Enrollment.

For the County of Ventura, the Fluid Benefits Enrollment implementation took about two months from start to finish. Security had to be figured out first due to custom roles. This is the portion of the implementation that took the longest – about a month. The County of Ventura is still testing Fluid Benefits Statement but does not anticipate that implementation taking longer than a month. The county has one functional resource and one IT resources, who spend about 50 percent of their days on this implementation.

Topic No. 2: Challenges Faced

Security was a common theme that occurred during the panel’s discussion of the challenges faced during the implementation.

The College of Lake County found PeopleBooks helpful on the page and role security that they needed. The college does not normally use delivered roles but had to for the setup. The IT resource believes there are PeopleCode references to the delivered roles for the activity guide setup to work. The delivered roles that the College of Lake County needed to build for the activity guide were Activity Guide Composer Administrator and PIAI_Administrator. The college also added two web libraries – WEBLOB_PTAI and WEBLOB_PTPPB – to a custom permission list in its standard employee role. This was done to replace the delivered PTPT1000. The College of Lake County acknowledged that this is not a problem if you have delivered roles.

In addition, the College of Lake County pointed out that in order to leverage the Acknowledgement Framework, you must set it up before adding it to a category or template. Effective Date logic is also important.

The College of Lake County found several bugs for Fluid Benefits Enrollment that they had to address, and they have several SRs currently open with Oracle.

The County of Ventura also faced challenges with security due to its custom roles. To combat this, they took the following steps:

  • Added Open Enrollment and setup the Fluid Activity Guide page for custom permission lists
  • Created a new custom permission list from a copy of the delivered Benefits Administration Fluid permission list (HCCPBN1020) to grant the custom Benefits Administrator role access to review the Review Employee Statements tile pages on the Workforce Administrator home page
  • Granted PTAI list privileges to the custom Benefits Administrator role
  • Added the following roles to the operator ID of IT security folks:
    • Activity Guide Composer Administrator
    • Custom Benefits Administrator role
  • Assigned the following permission lists to the custom Benefits Administrator role:
    • HCAGC1000
    • HCAGC1001
    • HCCPES1000
    • HCCPES1100
    • PTPT_ZV9_4200
  • Added the custom Benefits Administrator and Benefits Staff roles to the Benefits Administrator Fluid page portal security
  • Created a new 01/01/1901 effective dated record for the ENROLLM template and changed security roles to custom
  • Assigned action item assignments to the custom Benefits Administrator role for the Open Enrollment Activity Guide template

Topic No. 3: Executive Buy-In

For the College of Lake County, executive buy-in didn’t take much convincing. The HR Executive Director was convinced after simply watching a YouTube video about Fluid Open Enrollment for PI 28. Some of the selling points included the capability for easy access to benefits statements and the overall look of Fluid Open Enrollment.

The County of Ventura also said that there was no convincing necessary. The functionality and ease of implementation speakers for itself. The team at the County of Ventura is always looking to uptake when given the opportunity.

Topic No. 4: Change Management

The reaction from employees at the College of Lake County was quite positive overall from all groups in the college. The CIO even emailed Landmann about the success and positive feedback. In addition, Landmann said that there was no training needed for employees. She emailed out a simple “How to Enroll” document that was fairly self-explanatory. They had opened it in a test database to a group of users prior to go-live without any issues.

The County of Ventura will be going live with Fluid Open Enrollment in November 2019 during the open enrollment season. To prepare employees, the team plans on having several pieces of communication to send out at go-live, including all-employee emails, postcards mailed to homes, a newsletter article, and a user guide on the website. The team does not anticipate many issues.

Topic No. 5: Configuration

The College of Lake County was already using Benefits Administration before and didn’t make many changes. Most changes that were made were not new – they simply involved capabilities of which they were previously unaware. Updates made to existing pages included:

  • Unchecked “Show if No Choice”
    • Plan Type and Option tab > Self-Service Configuration
    • Removes Benefit Plan types from displaying in Activity Guide (i.e. unchecked all life insurance options)
  • Checked “Show Employer Costs on Form”
    • Benefit Progam tab > Self-Service Configuration
    • Allows employer costs to display in the activity guide
    • Greater respect for the cost of insurance
  • Added URL to the Handbook URL ID field
    • Benefit Program tab > Self-Service Configuration
    • A link to the open enrollment website will display in the supplemental panel
  • Benefit Administration processes were not impacted
  • New tab on the Open Enrollment Definition page called Fluid Activity Guide
    • With security, set up tile image (PS_OPEN_ENROLLMENT_L_FL)
    • Attach templates to the open enrollment process
      • Make sure to select the template you cloned and not the delivered one
    • Include a template image

The County of Ventura began using functionality that was already previously available, like new contacts and self-service plan descriptions on the Benefit Plan Setup pages.

Topic No. 6: Lessons Learned + Advice for Others

The College of Lake County had laid out advice for others based on lessons learned about the following areas:

  • Open Enrollment supplemental panel
    • You must fill in the following pages:
      • Administrative Contracts page
      • Enrollment Contact Assignment page
        • Leave ALLEVENT as the contact group
        • Supplemental panel coded specifically for this group
    • PeopleCode commented out for URL, so the link does not work (bug)
      • Activate the PeopleCode for the URL
  • Enrollment Preview Creation form
  • Benefits Statements options
    • Setup security to this new page
    • Connects Benefits Statements to the Schedule ID
    • Self-service checkbox

The County of Ventura pointed out some helpful resources for people to take advantage of during their implementations:

Topic No. 7: Future Plans

The College of Lake County hopes to add a welcome video in the future. Without enough time to create one, they removed their original welcome video. If you don’t want a welcome video in your activity guide, go to the WELCOME_VIDEO step in the Activity Guide Composer > Categories > Update Service ID from HC_AGC_VIDEO_FL to HC_AGC_INFO_FL.

The College of Lake County also hopes to add life insurance through Fluid Open Enrollment, test onboarding functionality and add it to Fluid Open Enrollment, and relocate the submit button for easier visibility.

The County of Ventura’s main goal is to go completely paperless, and they also hope to utilize the welcome video in the future.

Additional Resources

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