A new standard for data-exchange
WINDSOR, Conn., Jan. 28, 2020 – LIMRA today released the first set of data exchange standards focused on post-enrollment data for the employee benefits market. The LIMRA Data Exchange Standards (LDEx) are designed to standardize the data exchanged between insurance carriers and benefits administration technology companies for non-medical employee benefits. This will help reduce errors, drive consistency and streamline the process.
“As more employers move from paper to online benefits enrollment, growth in technology companies providing online benefits administration using varying data formats has increased. Without standards, our members found it time consuming and costly to manage the many data feeds and ensure accuracy,” said InAh Chambers, director, LIMRA member relations and sales – Workplace Benefits. “We worked with 22 insurance companies and 16 benefits administration technology companies to develop LDEx for the industry.”
The need for accurate, cost-effective data management is increasing. According to LIMRA research, nearly half of U.S. employers (47%) use online benefits enrollment programs during open enrollment. From an employee perspective, LIMRA research finds 68% of employees enroll for their benefits online.
Managing Large Amounts of Data
“With this shift in benefits administration, the resources needed to support the new structure changed dramatically for insurance companies. The large amount of data being transferred caused delays, errors, large increases in resources and ultimately, impacted the customer experience,” noted Mark Kozielec, director of Institutional Client Data for Prudential Financial and member of the Data Exchange Standards executive committee. “We are thrilled LIMRA worked to create these industry standards to help eliminate these challenges.”
LDEx is the latest shared solution developed by LIMRA, in partnership with the industry, to address common industry concerns. LIMRA worked with its Data Exchange Standards Committee to develop and test these standards. The committee consists of 38 companies, with the participating insurance companies representing 90% of the inforce non-medical workplace benefits market.
The first version of LDEx, Benefits Enrollment Management 1.0, will allow benefits administration technology companies to send coverage elections, changes and terminations, as well as non-coverage demographic changes to a carrier in a consistent XML format. Supported products include all life products, accidental death and dismemberment, critical illness, cancer, accident, dental, vision, hospital indemnity and short and long-term disability products.
But the work is not complete. Over the course of the next two years, the standards will be enhanced to allow companies to receive eligibility/employment information needed for service administration and reporting; enable carriers to send evidence of insurability decisions to update coverage; and permit carriers to send leave administration details to time management systems.
“One of the unique values LIMRA offers its members is the ability to bring the industry together to create cost-effective solutions that address the critical issues companies face,” said Michael Simonds, chief operating officer, Unum Group and LL Global Board member. “By creating universal data standards, LDEx will provide significant cost savings and ultimately improve our customers’ experience.”
Visit www.LIMRA.com/LDEx to learn more about LDEx and its future evolution.