Benefits open enrollment begins Nov. 1, first since Workday's launch

Starting Nov. 1, faculty and staff will have their first chance since the Workday launch to make annual benefit changes. Employees should review their choices, even if they typically make no adjustments, because the new platform isn't the only difference this year.

The open enrollment period Nov. 1-22 is the one time employees can change benefit elections for 2020, barring a qualifying life event.  

After employees make their benefits elections in Workday but before they submit them, a summary screen will show their coverage choices. It's important to review the summary closely to make sure it reflects the decisions intended. Employees may submit changes throughout the open enrollment period. The last changes submitted will be processed when the event closes at 5 p.m. Nov. 22. Due to the flexibility and transparency of this process in Workday, there is no need for a later step in which employees perform a final review, as was done in the past. The last elections submitted in Workday at the end of the open enrollment period will be final. 

Also new this year, employees must proactively confirm participation and contribution levels for health care spending accounts and the dependent care assistance program. Previously, contributions to those pre-tax flex plans would carry over at the same level from year to year if employees made no changes.  

Steady premiums 

There will be no premium increases or plan changes for ISU Plan benefits in 2020. Following federal regulations, the maximum annual contribution to a health care spending account will increase by $50 to $2,700. Changes will be effective Jan. 1, or upon underwriting approval for certain life insurance policies.  

How to access 

Beginning Nov. 1, a link to open enrollment will appear in the announcement section of an employee's Workday landing page that appears after logging in. The open enrollment link also will be available in an employee's Workday inbox. Workday will show an employee's available benefit plans, providing an option to manage benefits in which they've already enrolled and to enroll in plans they've previously waived. 

A job aid with detailed step-by-step instructions for navigating open enrollment in Workday will be available by Nov. 1 on the open enrollment website.  

For more help 

An open enrollment webcast will be livestreamed Nov. 6 (9-10:30 a.m.). The webcast will be recorded and posted to the benefits website a few days later. 

UHR benefits consultants will be available during the open computer lab sessions listed below to answer questions and help employees make changes. Employees enrolling dependents in the HMO medical plan will need the primary care provider, date of birth and Social Security number of all family members to be covered.  

2420A Friley Hall 

  • Nov. 8 (11 a.m.-1 p.m.)
  • Nov. 11 (3-4:30 p.m.)
  • Nov. 13 (8-10 a.m.) 

2244 Veterinary Medicine building  

  • Nov. 18 (11 a.m.-1 p.m.) 

64 Heady Hall 

  • Nov. 6 (3-4:30 p.m.)
  • Nov. 14 (11 a.m.-1 p.m.)
  • Nov. 18 (8:30-10 a.m.)
  • Nov. 20 (11 a.m.-1 p.m.) 

Employees with questions are encouraged to contact UHR by phone at 294-4800 or by email at