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HR Shared Services Year End – Utilization of Electronic W-2s

Over the past few years, the proliferation of electronic W-2s at year-end has grown significantly. There are advantages for both the company, as well as the employee.

A recent iPolling® question from a Peeriosity member in the Payroll research area provided them with a custom research report, prepared within hours, that included input from dozens of their peers. The member inquired about the use of electronic W-2s, as well as a request for comments. Samples of the results are summarized below.

status of Electronic W-2s in your company ipolling peeriosity

The main benefits noted for the Company:

  • Reduced Postage, Forms, and Envelop Costs
  • Reduced Labor Costs for Print and Mail
  • Time Saved on Wrong Address Tracking
  • Fewer Loss Replacements

The benefits for the employee:

As with all Peeriosity custom research and iPolling®, members have full visibility of respondents’ names by company, as well as the ability to contact them for follow-up discussion using Peeriosity’s integrated Peer MailTM system. Additionally, a discussion stream of comments adds further insights to the research. Some of the representative comments include:

  • Employee consent is required in order to furnish electronic W-2s. We have made a concerted effort to really publicize the benefits to employees and make it easy for them to complete the consent.
  • Each year gets easier and easier and our enrollment gets greater. The early adopters liked telling their co-workers and we eventually reached the “tipping point” in our fourth year when our enrollment numbers far exceeded our expectations. Now it’s the rare exception that an employee is not receiving an electronic W-2.
  • Electronic W-2s can usually be accessed between the 10th and 15th of January. Paper W-2 employees hear how quickly their co-workers received W-2s while they are waiting an additional two weeks or more before they receive theirs in the mail. We take advantage of the timing difference and roll out a campaign to get people to sign their consent for the following year’s W-2. Do this once or twice and the enrollment numbers swell.
  • We tried, but our lack of a vehicle to distribute and collect consent was a barrier for us to getting a critical mass. We are working on our HR portal, which should make this easier on our next try.
  • Our initial rollout was met with skepticism by a segment of our workforce. For them, we decided to mail paper W-2s as we always had, but also gave them access to the electronic W-2s and offered a modest incentive (a small dollar gift card) to do so. The results were good and we had much-improved enrollment the following year.

How are you delivering both company and employee benefits using electronic delivery?

Who are your peers and how are you collaborating with them?

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