Coral Gables, Florida
Apr 02, 2018
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution
The University of Miami is considered among the top tier institutions of higher education in the U.S. for its academic excellence, superior medical care, and cutting-edge research. At the U, we are committed to attracting a talented workforce to support our common purpose of transforming lives through teaching, research, and service. Through our values of Diversity, Integrity, Responsibility, Excellence, Compassion, Creativity and Teamwork (DIRECCT) we strive to create an environment where everyone contributes in making UM a great place to work. We are one of the largest private employers in Miami-Dade County; home to more than 13,400 faculty and staff from all over the world.

The Executive Director, Benefits, develops and implements the overall benefits strategy for the University of Miami health and welfare programs, as well as life insurance and retirement programs. This role manages the Benefits department, is responsible for the competitiveness and cost effectiveness of the company’s benefit programs and oversees all aspects of open enrollment, which includes development of collateral, implementation and University-wide communications. The director ensures regulatory compliance across all benefit programs enterprise-wide. Serving as the on‐site expert, the executive director will lead the strategic planning, and operations for the University of Miami health and wellness and retirement and financial planning objectives. The executive director will assist the Associate VP of Total Rewards and counsel to the organization’s leaders, develop strategic and tactical workforce benefit plans, deliver initiatives in support of total rewards objectives, and coordinate and provide oversight for the committees responsible for these functions. Serving as a member of the benefits leadership team, the executive director will participate in strategic planning for total rewards projects, and development of policies and procedures. This position interfaces with University leadership and the entire University community, interpreting federal laws and University benefit policy. The nature of the information is such that misinformation and errors will result in severe financial loss to employees and/or the University.

Core Job Functions:

1. Analyzes, designs, and implements benefit programs on an enterprise-wide basis, which affect employees across various levels (executive, exempt/non-exempt, union, etc.) and state locations.
2. Evaluates and compares existing company benefits with those of other employers by analyzing other plans, surveys and other sources of information. Plans, develops, and/or participates in area and industry surveys. Analyzes results and develops specific recommendations for review by management.
3. Leads benefit enrollment efforts, to include analysis and reporting on benefit enrollments and employee participation.
4. Directs day-to-day benefits operations, to include review of system benefits setups, processes and streamlining of administrative operations.
5. Ensures company benefit programs are consistently administered in compliance with company policies and government regulations through appropriate audits, reports, and personal contact.
6. Collaborates with HRIS, IT, and Payroll and other relevant stakeholders to ensure that the union and administrative retirement benefits are properly set up in a Workday environment.
7. Develops census data and solicits insurance companies for quotations. Evaluates quotation and makes recommendations to management. Develops company cost information for new plans and makes premium cost share recommendations to management.
8. Implements approved new plans or changes to existing plans by drafting written communications and enrollment materials, plan summary documents, and other media for communicating plans to employees. Ensures receipt of documents and process changes with vendors. Advises and guides management and employees on existing benefits.
9. Assures company compliance with provisions of Employee Retirement Income Security Act and the Affordable Care Act. Supervises preparation of reports and applications required by law to be filed with federal and state agencies, such as Internal Revenue Service, Department of Labor, insurance commissioners, and other regulatory agencies. Reviews and analyzes changes to state and federal laws pertaining to benefits, and reports necessary or suggested changes to management. Coordinates company benefits with government-sponsored programs.
10. Addresses benefits inquiries and complaints to ensure quick, equitable, courteous resolution, to include any needed service recovery. Serves as a liaison by maintaining contacts in person, and by phone or mail, with hospitals, physicians, insurance companies, employees, and beneficiaries to facilitate proper and complete utilization of benefits for all employees.
11. Manages all benefits staff, including performance management and hiring of employees within the department.
12. Collaborates with various stakeholders and University leadership in order to gain consensus regarding long-term health and welfare strategy.
13. Leads major benefit initiatives from strategy, planning, design, and implementation that align with overall University business strategies. Recommends benefit plan and system changes to leadership.
14. Develops effective strategies to encourage increase overall wellness including financial retirement accountability for faculty and staff.
15. Leads strategic negotiations with third party vendors, including directing the development of proposals.
16. Monitors and analyzes impact of health care reform and responsible compliance with all applicable regulations.
17. Leads and develops a staff of benefit professionals.
18. Identifies opportunities to ensure that employee’s total reward/benefit experiences are effective, comprehensive and meet the needs of both the employees and the University.
19. Leads benefit initiatives, focused on, but not limited to, streamlining processes, costs, improving opportunities for University community.
20. Leads the 403(b) financial audit process to ensure adequate internal controls and audit processes are conducted timely. Responsible for developing work plan and managing retirement financial statement audit processes, compiling and reviewing annual 403(b) financial statements and footnotes and variance analysis. Ability to analyze, understand and recommend treatment for complex 403(b) accounting issues and transactions.
21. Directs administration of internal Employees’ Retirement Plan benefit payment process to ensure benefit payments are processed accurately and on a timely basis based on the plan document and IRS regulations. Applies actuarial knowledge to retirement calculations to ensure that appropriate factors are used in figuring retirement benefits.
22. Serves as an internal expert to University leaders regarding benefit policies and procedures.
23. Deployment of the total reward strategy for the University.
24. Establishes credibility with leadership and the employees with benefit related matters.
25. Collaborates with overall benefit functions to establish best‐practice processes for planning and developing individual goals.
26. Partners with HR Client Services to ensure University’s total rewards needs are being met.
27. Develops and implements employee and leadership educational programs related to overall wellness including retirement/financial planning/budgeting/etc.
28. Coordinates activities related to benefits in conjunction with overall total reward philosophy.
29. Prepares reports and participate in special projects, committees and other activities and duties.
30. Directs the coordination and dissemination of highly confidential and detailed information to faculty, staff, personal representatives, attorneys, and actuaries.
31. Directs the preparation and distribution of the Total Rewards Statement for active employees and the distribution of individual deferred vested statements for terminated employees.
32. Responsible for reviews qualified Domestic Relations orders to ensure compliance with IRS regulations.
33. Responsible for communicating with employee, alternate payee and attorneys as required under IRS regulations. Authorizes assignment of pension funds in accordance with provisions of QDRO and as permitted by the Employees’ Retirement Plan, Faculty Retirement Plan, and Supplemental Retirement Plan.
34. Leads response to subpoenas requesting pension and life insurance information on individual employees. Appears at attorney’s offices or court proceedings, if subpoenaed.
35. Leads the evaluation of services available through insurance and investment companies to determine programs best meeting needs of organization.
36. Revises administrative procedures of various benefit programs to comply with updated/revised IRS regulations.
37. Leads plan document re‐writes and amendments with actuaries, attorneys and appropriate University representatives in timely manner.
38. Prepares government filings on timely basis for the Employees’ Retirement Plan (including PBGC filing), and 403(b) retirement plans.
39. Oversees the preparation of reports and special projects as requested by the Associate Vice President of Total Rewards or University leadership.
40. Carries out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the University’s policies and applicable law. Responsibilities include interviewing, hiring, and training employees; planning, assigning and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding and discipline employees; addressing and resolving problems.

This list of duties and responsibilities is not intended to be all-inclusive and may be expanded to include other duties or responsibilities as necessary.

Core Qualifications

• Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration, Human Resources or related field required; Master’s Degree preferred.

Certification and Licensing:
• CEBS designation preferred.

• Minimum eight years of benefits experience, to include at least five years of benefits leadership experience. Benefits within a large organization, specifically in higher education and/or healthcare environment a plus, with emphasis on group health benefits in the fully insured and self-insured markets.

Knowledge, Skills and Attitudes:
•Demonstrated commitment to the University’s core values of diversity, integrity, responsibility, excellence, compassion, creativity and teamwork.
•Demonstrated leadership and complex organizational skills.
•Excellent interpersonal skills in order to work with staff and professionals in multiple settings and in a multi-cultural environment promoting inclusion in the workplace.
•Excellent analytical, negotiation and critical thinking skills.
•Integrity of the highest order, as demonstrated in personal leadership behavior and decision, and tact.
•Ability to quickly establish trust and credibility with leadership across the health system.
•Ability to be flexible and receptive to change.
•Knowledge of ancillary product lines inclusive of dental, life and AD&D, vision, and wellness programs.
•Well‐versed in core health, wellness and retirement plan concepts (defined benefit plans, 403(b) plans, deferred compensation, life insurance).
•Working knowledge of GAAP, FASBs, SASs, and other accounting pronouncements affecting retirement plans.
•Strategic planner with sound technical skills, analytical ability, good judgment and strong operational focus.
•Strong oral and written communication skills.
•Results oriented problem solver.
•Ability to develop and execute strategic plans.
•Ability to lead team to execute Human Resources/Benefits goals.
•Strong project management skills, demonstrated through ability to lead projects/goal completion from concept to implementation.
•Ability to interpret an extensive variety of technical instructions and apply them to the calculation and distribution of benefits in various plans.
•Ability to respond to common inquires or complaints from employee, members of the business community or regulatory agencies.
•Ability to interact with and influence all organizational levels: faculty, staff, and senior leadership.
•Ability to negotiate contractual agreements for services.
•Strong verbal, written and presentation skills matched with ability to effectively communicate with all organizational levels.
•Innovation and adaptability are expected of leaders. Apply online. Position #: P00002148.

The University of Miami is home to some of the brightest minds in the world. We are committed to educating and nurturing students, creating knowledge, and providing service to our community and beyond. The University of Miami offers competitive salaries and a comprehensive benefits package including medical and dental benefits, tuition remission, vacation, paid holidays and much more. The University of Miami is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer. Come join us!


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