According to a Mercer news release, this has resulted in a 55% increase in chat sessions handled by Mercer contact center representatives in the first half of 2010 compared to the first half of 2009. In addition, a number of clients plan to roll out the capability later this year.
“Online chat provides another convenient way – in addition to phone and e-mail – for employees to interact with our contact center representatives,” said John Conroy, Director of Contact Center Services for Mercer’s US Outsourcing business, in the news release. “It gives retirement and health plan participants the opportunity to seamlessly seek help at the very point of transaction – while they are logged into their accounts.”
Mercer said in defined contribution plans, chat inquiries predominantly revolve around transactions, contributions, updating demographic data, and taking distributions. For defined benefit plans, participants have been asking questions about plan details, updating demographic data, and requesting disbursements. Health plan participants most commonly ask about plan design, providers, and verifying life events or plan eligibility.