Executive Director, Benefits

Florida, United States
Competitive Salary
Aug 31, 2020
Employment Level
Employment Type
Full Time
The University of Miami is among the top research universities and academic medical centers in the nation, and one of the largest private employers in South Florida.

With more than 16,000 faculty and staff, the University strives for excellence, and is driven by a powerful mission to transform and impact the lives of its students, patients, members of the community, and people across the globe.

The University is committed to fostering a culture of belonging, where everyone feels valued and has the opportunity to add value. Through values of Diversity, Integrity, Responsibility, Excellence, Compassion, Creativity, and Teamwork (DIRECCT) the U community works together to create an environment driven by purpose, excellence, community, and service.

Benefits Strategy

1.    Analyzes, designs, and implements benefit programs on an enterprise-wide basis.   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. 
2.    Collaborates with various stakeholders and University leadership in order to gain consensus regarding long-term health and welfare strategy. 
3.    Develops and 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. 
4.    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. Develops specific recommendations for review by management.
5.    Leads the evaluation of services available through insurance and investment companies to determine programs best meeting needs of organization.
6.    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.
7.    Leads strategic negotiations with third party vendors, including directing the development of proposals.

Benefits Department Operations

8.    Leads benefit enrollment efforts, to include analysis and reporting on benefit enrollments and employee participation. Drafts 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. 
9.    Directs day-to-day Benefits department operations, to include review of system benefits setups, processes and streamlining of administrative operations.
10.    Advises and guides management and employees on existing benefits.  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. Carries out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with the University’s policies and applicable law to include interviewing, hiring, and training employees; planning, assigning and directing work; appraising performance; rewarding and discipline employees; addressing and resolving problems.
12.     Serves as an internal expert to University leaders regarding benefit policies and procedures.  Establishes credibility with leadership and the employees with benefit related matters. 
13.    Oversees the preparation of reports and special projects as requested by the Associate Vice President of Total Rewards or University leadership. 
14.    Leads plan document re‐writes and amendments with actuaries, attorneys and appropriate University representatives in timely manner.
15.    Leads response to subpoenas requesting pension and life insurance information on individual employees. Appears at attorney’s offices or court proceedings, if subpoenaed.
16.    Develops and implements employee and leadership educational programs related to overall wellness including retirement/financial planning/budgeting/etc. 
17.    Prepares reports and participate in special projects, committees and other activities and duties. 
18.    Directs the coordination and dissemination of highly confidential and detailed information to faculty, staff, personal representatives, attorneys, and actuaries.
19.    Directs the preparation and distribution of the Total Rewards Statement for active employees and the distribution of individual deferred vested statements for terminated employees. 

 Benefits Compliance

Ensures company benefit programs are consistently administered in compliance with company policies and government regulations (i.e. Employee Retirement Income Security Act and the Affordable Care Act etc.) through appropriate audits, reports, and personal contact. 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. Monitors and analyzes impact of health care reform and responsible compliance with all applicable regulations.
21.    Collaborates with HRIS, IT, and Payroll and other relevant stakeholders to ensure benefits are properly set up in a Workday environment.
22.    Leads the 403(b) financial audit process to ensure adequate internal controls and audit processes are conducted timely. Develops work plan and manages retirement financial statement audit processes, compiling and reviewing annual 403(b) financial statements and footnotes and variance analysis. Analyzes, understands and recommends action for complex 403(b) accounting issues and transactions. 
23.    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. Prepares government filings on timely basis for the Employees’ Retirement Plan (including PBGC filing), and 403(b) retirement plans. 
24.    Ensures compliance with IRS regulations to include reviews of qualified Domestic Relations orders, communicating with employee, alternate payee and attorneys as required. 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. Revises administrative procedures of various benefit programs to comply with updated/revised IRS regulations.
25.    Ensures internal control oversight and compliance with laws and regulations, safeguarding of assets, compliance with University policies and procedures, reliability of internal and external reporting, and efficiency and effectiveness of operations. Creates an effective control environment, conducts risk assessment, implements and monitors controls.

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 relevant field




Minimum 10 years of related HR experience, 5 of which is in a benefits leadership role preferably in an University/Academic Medical Center or comparable.


Knowledge, Skills and Attitudes:

  • Commitment to the University’s core values
  • Ability to communicate effectively in both oral and written form
  • Ability to maintain effective interpersonal relationships
  • Ability to recognize, analyze and solve a variety of problems
  • Ability to manage a budget and work within the constraints of that budget
  • Ability to direct, manage, implement, and evaluate department operations
  • Ability to establish department goals and objectives that support the strategic plan
  • Proficiency in computer software (i.e. Microsoft Office)

The University of Miami is an Equal Opportunity Employer - Females/Minorities/Protected Veterans/Individuals with Disabilities are encouraged to apply. Applicants and employees are protected from discrimination based on certain categories protected by Federal law. Click here for additional information.