Building a Business Case for Tuition Reimbursement Software

Tired of tracking your organization's tuition reimbursement program using paper forms and Excel? There's a better, more efficient, and professional way to implement and manage your program - tuition reimbursement software.

By automating your program, you will streamline the process and save both time and money overall.

Take a look at the six reasons below your company should invest in tuition reimbursement software.

1. Minimize Manual Labor

Free up HR management to focus on other tasks by implementing tuition reimbursement software. With it, policy requirements will no longer need to be manually reviewed and enforced.

And, if you choose a tuition reimbursement software vendor that allows you to set up and configure your system to your specifications, you will be able to have a program that's almost completely automated.

This means that most, if not all, of your HR team's manual involvement will be removed from your reimbursement process, allowing them to redirect their time and energy elsewhere. Tuition reimbursement software will also minimize manual labor in the following ways:

  • Only eligible employees will be able to submit requests, saving HR management from needlessly evaluating and processing applications manually
  • Requests cannot exceed pre-defined dollar limits that you have configured based on a number of factors, such as plan year/term, employee status, request type, etc.
  • Manually determining approvers and delivering the paperwork to them is eliminated

2. Eliminate Manual Errors

As your tuition plan grows, manual maintenance will become more susceptible to occasional calculation errors. Without proper tracking, it can take years to identify when overpayments have been made -- if they are ever caught at all.

At that point, the process of recovering the overpaid funds may prove more costly than the actual overpayments.

Employees will always let you know when you've made an error resulting in them receiving less money than expected, but it is rare that overpayments will be brought to your attention.

In a blog post on the dangers of manual data entry on MarketView Connection, a blog run by GlobalView, it's stated that, "you might not realize how big of a problem manual data entry can pose to the collection and interpretation of data. Why is this the case? It's a basic concept; humans aren't machines. We make mistakes and forget things, which can wreak havoc on the data entry process."

The article goes on to praise the replacement of manual data entry with software. "Automated solutions are excellent because they allow nearly the entire process of retrieving, inputting, and verifying data to be handled automatically. Using sophisticated software that is designed to fit your specific needs, you can determine exactly how you want data to be extracted and input, the format with which you receive it in, and whether or not the data is delivered real-time or on a scheduled basis."

And with an average error rate of 1% with manual data entry, no company is immune to overpayments and other costly mistakes, making tuition reimbursement a smart decision for both small and large organizations.

3. Measuring Tangible and Intangible ROI

Time and Cost Savings

The most obvious benefits of automating your tuition reimbursement process are the time and cost savings you will experience. However, ROI can vary greatly depending on the complexity of your program, number of participants, and application requirements.

Your specific savings can include:

  • HR labor and administration costs
  • Less time for employees to submit applications for reimbursement
  • Quicker application approvals
  • Additional time available for all involved to focus on their primary work responsibilities

4. Improved Employee Satisfaction

When an employee has to read an in-depth policy document explaining when they can submit applications for reimbursement, who needs to approve their requests, and how much money they're eligible for, (depending on if they're full- or part-time) the process becomes stressful and time-consuming.

But using a web-based tuition reimbursement software platform to manage their requests instead means that most of these headaches are eliminated.

Some of the ways automating your program can boost employee satisfaction levels include:

  • Employees will not be able to submit requests outside of allowed enrollment or submission date ranges, eliminating frustration and confusion
  • Employees will not be able to submit requests that exceed their policy's dollar allowance
  • Employees do not need to worry about who must approve their application, as the system routes it automatically to as many people as needed, in the order you specify in your system setup
  • Employees never need to follow up with HR or their approvers to check the status of their application because they can check online any time and receive email notifications for key milestones directly from the system

5. Hiring Incentive and Differentiator

Help your organization attract top talent and stand out from other companies by adding or featuring tuition reimbursement as a benefit for new employees.

If a potential hire is deciding between your company and another, tuition reimbursement can be the benefit that sways their decision. Now add into that the fact that your organization uses software that makes the application process and eligibility screening simple and straightforward, and your program will be a strong hiring incentive.

With the potential to review employers online more likely and widespread than ever, from Yelp and Glassdoor, to personal blogs and Google reviews, companies would be wise to ensure their benefits come across to employees as just that - or they will inevitably find disgruntled reviews online.

Tuition reimbursement software can be the tool that keeps satisfaction levels high, reducing the likelihood that program applicants and participants will turn to the internet with negative reviews.

6. Going Green

Using an online system to manage your entire tuition reimbursement process means eliminating paper applications and printouts of required documentation.

All request data is stored indefinitely and available 24/7 for as long as you are a client when you use software.

In an article for Entrepreneur on the benefits of going paperless for businesses, it's stated that, "small to medium-sized businesses in the UK waste the equivalent of $70 million per day looking for documents."

On top of this, "it's been estimated that the U.S. spends $460 billion (yes, billion!) in salaries just to manage paper-driven information overload. That's a whole lot of money and time wasted in old-school technology."

Case Closed

The case for using tuition reimbursement software should be an easy one to win.

From reducing the likelihood of costly errors to keeping employee satisfaction levels high, investing in program automation is a small price to pay when your company can benefit so greatly from it.