Business Health Agenda

Communications Track Sessions

Communications Track


Wednesday, March 29 — Employer-Only Pre-Conference

Noon - 1:00 p.m.
Benefit Communicators Pre-Conference Lunch and Kick-off Speaker
(Open to Employers Only)
Exploring the Behavioral Science Principles Behind Engagement

How do we achieve genuine employee engagement when it comes to their health and related care decisions? Dr. Vic Strecher will relate behavioral science principles of engagement to real-world approaches for employers: approaches that range from digital communications to organizational behaviors. He’ll also make sure that you’re, well... engaged.

Victor J. Strecher, Ph.D, MPH, Professor and Director for Innovation and Social Entrepreneurship, University of Michigan School of Public Health
1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Breakout Sessions 1
(Choose one of the Breakout Sessions below)
  • 1A Workshop: Designing a Personalized Communication Strategy

    Personalized messaging is gaining enormous momentum in the health and benefits space as the gold standard for achieving authentic employee engagement. However, employers consistently cite barriers to implementation such as acquiring the appropriate data feeds, employee privacy concerns and limited budgeting capabilities. Learn from an expert consultant on how to design a smart and personalized communication strategy that works for your organization.

    • Renya Spak, Partner, Health Innovation Team, Mercer
    • Antonio Poglianich, Partner, Communications, Mercer
  • 1B Benchmarking: Benefits in Your Pocket: Delivering Content to Smart Phones

    Employees are increasingly looking for ways to receive and digest information faster. Learn from tech-savvy employers on how they leverage mobile platforms to ensure that their employees can access benefits and wellness information where and when they need it.

    • Julie Ewry, Manager, Benefit Communications & Training, HCR ManorCare
    • Joanne Nieves, Manager, Communications, Total Rewards, Pitney Bowes, Inc.
    • Tom Sondergeld, Vice President Global Benefits & Mobility, Walgreens Boots Alliance
  • 1C Benchmarking: High-Impact Communications to Emphasize and Address Management of Big-Ticket Health Conditions

    Employers are progressively implementing — in the name of lower costs and a healthier workforce — condition-specific platforms that aim to impart strong, evidence-based health guidance to employees. Such initiatives involve segmenting employee communications by health condition or disease state (e.g., diabetes, musculoskeletal, pregnancy, cancer) and targeting messages accordingly. Learn how employers are utilizing new, high-touch platforms to steer employees toward a wiser, more efficient path to health.

    • Melissa Fitzgerald, Manager Integrated Health Plans, Honeywell
    • Leslie Pilliod, Director, Pay & Benefits Engagement, Target Corporation
    • Donna Shenoha, Business Initiatives Consultant, Benefits Strategy and Planning, Wells Fargo & Company
  • 1D Workshop: Leveraging Design Think Principles to Maximize Employee Engagement

    Ever thought about how you might redesign or restructure the employee experience in a way that would generate more desired results? Whether this means increased open enrollment numbers or smarter, more cost effective health care decisions, there is a creative solution to getting there. "Design Think" can be a powerful approach to reshaping employee engagement. Learn what it’s all about!

    • Stacey Babyak, Senior Consultant, Engagement, Conduent Human Resources Service, Conduent
    • Betsy Woods Brooks, Principal, Engagement Practice, Conduent
2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Breakout Sessions 2
(Choose one of the Breakout Sessions below)
  • 2A Benchmarking: To Creep or Not to Creep: Pushing the Envelope on Employee Engagement

    How "creepy" is "too creepy?" Concerned that your highly personalized communications might enter "Big Brother" territory? Hear from a spectrum of employers – some who have "pushed the envelope" and others who have "played it safe" personalizing communications successfully within the confines of their organizational structure – on implementing a personalized messaging strategy and employee reaction.

    • Ben Jackson, Executive Director - Benefits, AT&T
  • 2B Benchmarking: The HR Communicator’s Diary Exposed: Lessons Learned from the A-Ha Moments, Successes, Trials and Tribulations of HR Messaging

    There is no "one-size-fits-all" approach to HR messaging, nor are there simple steps to achieving effective engagement. Communication success stories are often born from months of planning, some trial and error, enlightening mistakes, adaptation and repositioning; others from a single haphazard move that triggers the wonderfully unexpected. Hear your peers discuss past HR communication challenges, surprises, lessons learned, successes and failures. Participants will discuss crisis management tactics and tips for recovery when HR messaging goes awry.

    • Becky Atkeison, Director of Enterprise Health and Well-being, FedEx Services
    • Amy O'Neill, AVP & Director, Health and Welfare Programs, Liberty Mutual Insurance
  • 2C Workshop: Targeting Based on Employee Preference: Why It’s Important and How to Get Started

    While behavior change messages can be incredibly influential, lasting results are hard to come by. In the end, employees are most likely to take action and stay engaged when given the option to do so on their own terms. As such, employers are exploring ways to deliver content that is reflective of employee preference. Learn how to reach your workforce and get results based on communicating what’s relevant, desired and convenient to the individual employee.

    Led by Eric Zimmerman, Chief Marketing Officer, RedBrick Health Corporation
  • 2D Benchmarking: Leverage Social Media to Better Engage Your Workforce

    Social media has taken the world by storm. Employers have tapped into its power to stay connected with their workforce, promote health and benefits initiatives, and push out messages that are timely, relevant and can be discussed and responded to in real time. Discuss how to take your social media strategy to the next level.

    • Dominic Lorusso, Director, Health Partnership, Consumer Reports
    • Kevin Winterfield, Director, Social Media, Consumer Reports
3:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Wrap-up Panel


Thursday, March 30 — Open to All Attendees

10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Concurrent Sessions 1
1A - Communication/Engagement: Let's Get Personal!

Employers, along with their partners, are progressively looking to personalize — based on preference and even personal health information — messaging and resources to better suit the individual employee. Learn from three employers — varying in approach — on how they got started on this personalization journey, employee reception and outcomes of their efforts.

  • Adam Glauberg, Director of Global Health Services in the Americas, Johnson & Johnson
  • Erik Sossa, Vice President, Global Benefits, PepsiCo, Inc.
  • Lisa Woods, Senior Director, Health Care Benefits, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.
12:45 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Concurrent Sessions 2
2B - Communication/Engagement: The Potential (and Risks) of Using Data in Communications

Employers want to engage employees “just-in-time” – at the point a health care decision is about to be made. Using data to mine individuals who could potentially be ripe for targeted communications is one option, but highly debated among employers and their partners. Hear from communication experts on how to tap into the power of data to communicate and engage employees, as well as discuss the potential downfalls of this approach.

  • Mike Adams, Senior Director, Employee Benefits, Dean Foods
  • Maura Cawley, Partner, Mercer
  • Milt Ezzard, Sr. Director of Global Benefits, Activision Blizzard
2:00 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.
Concurrent Sessions 3
3A - Communication/Engagement: Smart Engagement: The Key to Better Health Outcomes

There's "engagement," and then there's "smart engagement." The latter has been shown to yield superior health outcomes and substantial cost savings for employers and the employee patients that make up their workforce. Hear from two employers and their partners who have piloted smart engagement approaches. By attending this session, participants will discover what smart engagement looks like — technology-driven, highly informed, personalized guidance through the health care system.

  • Anne Marie Aponte, Senior Vice President, Operations, Accolade
  • Michael DeSimone, Vice President of Product and Marketing, Best Doctors
  • Andy Rosa, Director, Corporate HR, Benefits & Workforce Health, AmeriGas
  • Karleen Stephens, Manager, Wellbeing and Disability Services, Steelcase, Inc.


Friday, March 31 — Open to All Attendees

8:00 a.m. - 9:15 a.m.
Concurrent Sessions 4
4A - Communication/Engagement: Concierge as an Engagement Strategy

Increasingly, employers are implementing an advocate approach, whereby employees are connected with an individual trained to serve as their health care confidant and navigator through the complex health care system. This resource, or liaison, can be a personal health assistant, a concierge, or even a medical professional. Such models have demonstrated positive outcomes, indicating that "hand-holding" does result in better health care decisions. Is concierge a strategy for your company? Hear from three large employers to learn more.

  • Arielle Bogorad, Senior Director, Worldwide Benefits, Wellness and Fitness, Cerner Corporation
  • Ann Otley, Director of Employee Benefits, HCR ManorCare
  • Ann Marie Odrobina, Group Vice President, Employee Benefits, M&T Bank

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