Press release from Business Wire
Unum recognized for commitment to clear communication
Monday, July 23, 2012
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (Business Wire) -- Simpler is better. That philosophy drives the approach Unum (NYSE:UNM) takes to customer communication, and recently earned the company a ClearMark Award from the Center for Plain Language.
“This recognition is a great indication of the value of the work we've done to simplify our communications in every area of the business,” said Chris St. John, Consumer Strategy director at Unum. “Our industry is complex, so it's a challenge to make plain language the standard. But we're focused on making it happen.”
Judges at the recent ClearMark Awards named a guide from Unum the best document in its category. The guide clearly explains how to file a disability claim and what to expect once the claim is filed.
Judges praised the guide's clear timeline and direct, jargon-free language. The revision of the guide was part of a much broader effort across the company to make Unum's communications to its customers simpler and more effective.
“Making employee benefits easier to understand and use is critical to helping consumers protect their financial stability,” St. John said. “Individuals are increasingly responsible for choosing and paying for their financial protection benefits. Ensuring they have the information they need in a form that's easy to understand is a strong focus for Unum.”
Among the ways Unum is making benefits information useful and clear:
- A benefits education site at GetBenefitSmart.com uses a fun quiz and conversational descriptions to help employees learn how benefits are useful at specific ages and stages of life. The site is also available in Spanish at BeneficiosParaMi.com.
- A benefits enrollment platform features a simple, shopping cart approach and a video coach who explains insurance terms in plain language;
- A health care reform information site at unum.com/HealthCareReform offers straightforward explanations of reform and its effects;
- Benefits enrollment booklets include simple education, rates and forms information, and a front-page summary of when and where enrollment events will occur.
Making clear communication an expectation in the world of benefits is an ongoing, collective effort, St. John said.
“Across our business, we work in teams to assess and improve letters, forms and other documents,” St. John said. “We've rolled out training across the company to give employees clear, consistent guidance on simplifying their communications.
“We've made a lot of progress, but there's always more to do. We'll keep at it.”
View Unum's winning entry in the ClearMark Awards here: http://centerforplainlanguage.org/awards/clearmark2012/unum/.
Unum (www.unum.com) is one of the leading providers of employee benefits products and services in the United States and the United Kingdom. Through its subsidiaries, Unum Group paid approximately $6 billion in total benefits to customers in 2011.
Mary Fortune, 423-294-6368
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