Choosing the Right FMLA Administration Partner

People tell you ‘life is short!’ No, it’s not. Life is long, especially if you make the wrong decisions.” – Chris Rock.

There’s no way of knowing for sure if Mr. Rock was talking about FMLA administration when he made this remark in 1996, but the fact his special was called, “Bring the Pain,” has us thinking yes, he was definitely talking about FMLA management struggles.

If you’re looking to outsource your FMLA process to a 3rd party and reduce the pain of administering all the paperwork, tracking all the time, securely storing important documents, and supporting your people, making the wrong decision can make your life feel very, very long indeed.

So how do you choose the right partner? What capabilities do they absolutely need to have? Let’s take a look at four key areas.

Finding FMLA Expertise and Experience

This might seem obvious, but make sure the FMLA administration partner you choose are FMLA experts. They should have a deep understanding of FMLA regulations and stay up-to-date with any changes in federal and state laws related to family and medical leave.

Check to see if they have a proven track record in managing FMLA processes for organizations of similar size and complexity and industry. Do they have experience in efficiently managing FMLA leaves? This should include the intake of leave requests, eligibility determinations, tracking leave durations, and coordinating communication with employees and healthcare providers.

At Tilt, our in-house legal and compliance team is composed of Employment Attorneys, FMLA Specialists, and Payroll Specialists who geek out on all things leave laws. We stay current on the law so that you don’t have to, and even break down the latest developments in leave legislation just in case you’re dying to know. 

With legal expertise backing our platform and our people, our partners know that their employees’ FMLA journeys (Note: Tilt comprehensively manages ALL types of leave…this blog is just to talk about FMLA though, so let’s get back to it) are being handled by experts. As for our proven track record, taking this blog writer’s word for it won’t cut it, so check out Tilt’s reviews for yourself here on Capterra.

Tilt's Capterra Reviews

FMLA Technology and Software Capabilities

Being experts on FMLA is a must-have, but expertise only goes so far if the solution isn’t user-friendly. An online platform should streamline the FMLA process for both HR professionals and employees alike, so look for a system that facilitates leave requests, document submission, and status tracking.

Your FMLA partner should offer robust reporting and analytics tools that allow you to monitor leave usage, compliance, and trends within the organization. Consider whether the FMLA administrator’s software can integrate with your existing HR and payroll systems to minimize data entry and enhance data accuracy.

Tilt’s platform is customizable to support your organization’s specific leave policies, is insurance carrier agnostic, and allows information to flow from our system to yours quickly and accurately. Above all that, however, is that it’s easy to use!

When an employee enters a leave into Tilt, they’ll get access to a personalized leave plan that outlines everything that they need to do as it pertains to FMLA and beyond to ensure they have a smooth journey and your organization stays compliant with regulations and requirements.

Tilt's Personalized Employee Leave Plans

This means you no longer have to deal with any of the FMLA administrative headaches you used to. We handle everything FMLA for you, from soup to nuts.

The Importance of FMLA Compliance and Risk Management

So we’ve covered two E’s…“expertise” and “ease of use,” so let’s talk about the big C, “compliance.” An easy-to-use solution that doesn’t keep your organization compliant is exposing your organization to major risk. Your FMLA administrator should assist in ensuring FMLA compliance by providing accurate leave records and operating with secure practices.

Like inserting the USB chord upside down on the first try, complex FMLA situations are going to happen. Make sure your FMLA partner has the chops to offer guidance when FMLA situations go sideways, especially when dealing with disputed leave requests or potential legal issues.

Assessing their data security protocols is also a must as they’ll need to protect sensitive employee health information and maintain compliance with privacy regulations like HIPAA.

Safe & Secure File Uploading & Storage

With Tilt, employees can securely upload their FMLA documentation directly into the platform. No more loose email threads with sensitive attachments or hard drive folders that get lost in the shuffle (or worse…shared to people who shouldn’t have access. 

What does “securely” mean? From data encryption, to 2FA and SSO, to being SOC-II compliant, we take the security of your data as seriously as we do the adherence to FMLA guidelines and regulations. You can learn more about our security here.

What Does Good FMLA Support and Communication Look Like?

Finally, an employee needing to go on leave is a human experience. It’s a human experience from your position as someone trying to support your people in the best way possible, and it’s a human experience for your employees who are potentially going through something life-changing.

Evaluate the responsiveness and availability of your FMLA partner’s customer support team. Timely communication is critical when dealing with leave requests and employee inquiries, and if you’re relying on 1-800 numbers and call centers you and your employees are going to have a bad time.

Consider how the FMLA administrator communicates with employees regarding FMLA rights, responsibilities, and the status of their leave requests. Do they operate with empathy and compassion? Both can make or break your employee’s experience on leave.

Tilt has managed a lot of leaves in our day, and every one has been supported by a 1-1 dedicated Leave Success Manager (LSM). Rather than tell you how great our LSMs are, here’s what some of the employees from our customers have to say about the Tilt experience:

“My LSM Sabrina was such a wonderful surprise from the day we met. Navigating FMLA is confusing, and somewhat frightening to navigate on your own especially as you’re going through such a large life change. I was so happy on day one when Sabrina emailed me immediately to chat live about leave, what I needed to do, and helped consult on strategy. Sabrina, thank you so much for all that you did to make my leave easy and enjoyable, you are the best!” – N. Cooper, Principal Product Manager @ Invoca

“It was great to have a human to be able to ask questions in plain English, and to have her guide me through the steps that were needed across different services and platforms. Dealing with the leave was already stressful enough, so it was amazing to have someone there to help instead of having another platform I had to figure out.”  – Henry, Principal Engineer @ Ease

“Catrina (my LSM) and the Tilt team displayed the best combination of professionalism and compassion during a very difficult time for me. I felt supported during my time away and felt prepared for my return when the time came.” F. Carlos Taylor, Customer Success Partner @ The Guarantors

FMLA Management Made Easy

When you’re looking to take FMLA off your plate for good, the decision you make can be the difference between a life of leisure and long, painful, ongoing struggle. Pick a 3rd party FMLA solution that works for you, supports your people, and keeps you compliant.

About Tilt

Tilt is leading the charge in all things leave of absence management through easy-to-use tech and human touch. Since 2017, our proprietary platform and Empathy Warriors have been helping customers make leave not suck by eliminating administrative burdens, keeping companies compliant, and providing a truly positive and supportive leave of absence experience for their people.

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