Tech, USG Partner on 2014 Benefits

When the University System of Georgia (USG) decided to offer new benefit options in 2014, in addition to medical plans, Georgia Tech was one of the institutions it turned to for advice. 

“We have a strong partnership with the USG office,” said Brandon Conkle, director of Total Rewards in the Office of Human Resources. “We shared examples of the Tech plans, which were some of the best in the system, to use as models for the new plans. Going forward, the new plans match or exceed the old Georgia Tech plans in almost every way.”

Starting in January 2014, all USG colleges and universities will offer the same core benefits options including supplemental life insurance, dental, vision, short- and long-term disability, and flexible spending and health savings accounts.

Currently, each institution offers its own selection of benefits outside of the four medical plans.

“USG took the best plan elements from all the schools, including Tech, to come up with a composite plan that ensured that no one was diminished under the new plan design,” Conkle said. “For example, under our old plans, employees could have elected life insurance under two different vendors. Now, they can elect coverage under one provider for that same amount.”

This year’s open enrollment period will run from Nov. 11-22. The USG selected these dates, which fall later in the year than usual, to prepare for the significant plan changes.

Whether you are making benefits changes or not, all faculty and staff members will need to log in to TechWorks to select 2014 benefits. This is also an ideal time to update your personal information and beneficiaries.

“With a nonrefundable tobacco surcharge being applied during this open enrollment, employees need to make sure if they don’t use tobacco they log in and opt out of the surcharge,” Conkle said. “But everyone should pay attention, examine the plans offered, and make rational choices about their coverage and plans during each open enrollment.”  

The following resources will also be available to provide additional benefits
information and assistance:

  • 2014 Benefits Summary. These will be mailed to employees’ homes in late October.
  • Help Line. Call 404-894-GTHR Nov. 4-22 (between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m.).
  • Computer Lab. Visit Room 319 in the Student Center Nov. 19-20 (between 9:30 a.m. and 5 p.m.) to log on to TechWorks to complete benefits elections.
  • Campus Information Sessions. These sessions on Oct. 22 and Nov. 8 will address the changes for 2014, new plans, and other important action items for this year’s open enrollment. Visit the open enrollment website for more details about times and locations: http://www.ohr.gatech.edu/openenrollment.

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