Sonic Automotive Improves Enrollment by 30% with HSA On Demand [Case Study]2019-09-12T14:16:09-04:00

Project Description

ConnectYourCare Success Story

Sonic Automotive Achieves 30% Enrollment Uptick with HSA On Demand®

Through innovation and education, Fortune 500 company bolsters enrollment in tax-advantaged health care accounts


About Sonic Automotive

Sonic Automotive, as a Fortune 500 company and member of the Russell 2000 Index, is among the largest automotive retailers in the United States. Sonic Automotive operates over 100 dealerships spread across 13 states and 25 major metropolitan markets. The company represents approximately 25 different automotive brands.


Helping employees overcome their fears

Sonic Automotive was experiencing very low participation in its cost-saving Health Savings Account (HSA) plan, citing employee fears over the higher deductible and concerns about building up balances large enough to cover needed care.

“There was concern over employee adoption for the High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP), and like many employers, we struggled to get employees to actually save for the future,” said Terri Byron, formerly the benefits manager for Sonic Automotive. “I think what was probably most challenging was making sure that the population understood the account options that they have.” she added.


Alleviating high-deductible concerns and boosting enrollment

Sonic Automotive looked to ConnectYourCare for answers to help mitigate high deductible concerns and grow enrollment.

ConnectYourCare’s unique HSA On Demand® service was the perfect fit, offering Sonic Automotive employees convenient and flexible HSA funding options, thereby breaking down the barriers to HDHP enrollment.

HSA On Demand enables employees to cover health care expenses when there may not be enough money in the HSA at the time of the service. Participating employees have access to their full year’s HSA contribution— including both employee and employer funds—at any time of year, right at the time of service.

How HSA On Demand Works

With most traditional HSAs, employees can only use funds after they have been deposited into an HSA. So, in the beginning of your plan year, their HSA balance could be very low, not enough to cover a medical expense.

Conversely, HSA On Demand automatically covers employees from day one when it comes to paying for eligible expenses. From prescriptions to unanticipated medical events, HSA On Demand accelerates funds right at the point of service. The accelerated contributions are repaid through future payroll deductions.

HSA On Demand is both a safety net for employees and a cost-savings solution for employers, since they can make contributions at the end of a plan year instead of the beginning.

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Terri Byron

“The main reason we selected ConnectYourCare is the HSA On Demand feature. We knew that was going to be an innovation that will be helpful for us.

“Employees tend to think that their companies are doing things that are going to take away from them, and it’s really important that we make them trust us and feel comfortable that we are trying to help them make the best decisions for their families and themselves.”

Terri Byron • Benefits Manager, Sonic Automotive


  • Increased Adoption with HSA On Demand

    Uptick in HSA Enrollment: 30%

    With the unique features of HSA On Demand, plus a strategic communications program to re-educate the organization, ConnectYourCare enabled Sonic Automotive to achieve a 30% uptick in HSA enrollment.

If you’re worried about the deductible, you don’t need to be, because you have the acceleration available to you. That helped to ease some of the fear, and that’s one of the reasons we achieved a better enrollment this year.

Terri ByronTerri Byron • Benefits Manager, Sonic Automotive
  • Engaging and Effective Communications

    As part of the strategy to boost enrollment, ConnectYourCare supported Sonic Automotive and its workforce with ongoing digital and print communications. Sonic Automotive also elected to share with their workforce educational videos, which effectively helped to raise awareness around tax-advantaged HSA contributions and investments.

We’ve been able to some heavy-duty communication campaigns to make sure our population was more familiar with the plans they were enrolled in, and also to make sure that it was the best plan for them and their families’ needs. By making sure that we regularly communicated, and making [enrollment communications] simpler to understand, ConnectYourCare was able to help us achieve a big milestone. Their communications team has been terrific.

Terri ByronTerri Byron • Benefits Manager, Sonic Automotive
  • Improved Reporting and User Experience

    ConnectYourCare also enabled Sonic Automotive through transparent and convenient online reporting capabilities.

    Additionally, the mobile app and participant website are valuable for Sonic Automotive employees, offering them insight into important data at a glance — including balance and transactional information.

If you go to the ConnectYourCare website, you are able to pull so many different reports from their dashboard, and that helpful information is way above what I have seen in the past with other administrators.

Terri ByronTerri Byron • Benefits Manager, Sonic Automotive
  • Onboarding and Member Services

    Additionally, ConnectYourCare helped remove some of the benefits administration burden off Sonic Automotive.

One of the things that was frustrating for me was the Customer Identification Process (CIP). ConnectYourCare worked with [the banking partner] and helped us improve the process. That’s something I haven’t seen anyone else do.

Terri ByronTerri Byron • Benefits Manager, Sonic Automotive
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