Millennials Most Confident about Benefits Decisions

November 10, 2011 ( - According to research from The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America, Millennials are by far the most confident about their ability to make the right benefit decisions.

Ninety-six percent of Millennials reported they feel “highly confident” versus 66% of Gen Xers and 64% of Baby Boomers.   

The survey also found nearly 80% of employees spend less than a total of two hours evaluating their insurance benefits options, including group medical, dental, life, and disability insurance.    

Only 32% of all employees described their approach to open enrollment as one that incorporates a “careful review” of their benefits details and options. Millennials are more likely than their older co-workers to say they carefully enrolled in available benefits options (50% vs. 30% of Gen Xers and 31% of Baby Boomers).   

Yet, the research indicates that Millennials may be underinsured. A smaller percentage of Millennials (78%) are currently enrolled in available benefits as compared to their older colleagues (92%), particularly life (48% vs. 71%) and disability insurance (53% vs. 68%).

Benefits Enrollment Challenges  

While online benefits enrollment has become the new normal—with its use more than doubling in five years to 62%—many of the same communication and engagement challenges still persist, according to research from The Guardian Life Insurance Company of America. A majority of workers, regardless of age or life-stage, say they try to better understand their benefits options by reading their benefits materials (77%) and reviewing their prior year’s selections (66%); however, a minority reported that they have attended benefits meetings (37%), spoken with a benefits adviser (29%), used online planning tools (28%), or spoken with a carrier representative (14%) prior to enrollment.  

While some challenges continue, the research found that online enrollment can help improve employee perceptions of employer benefits communication and education efforts; 61% of workers who used an online benefits enrollment tool and found it to be a very easy process gave top ratings to their employers’ benefits education and communication efforts, compared to 35% of others.    

Full research results can be viewed at