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Take advantage of excellent benefits to help you thrive

Open Enrollment Is Here!

Northwestern University's annual Open Enrollment is Monday, October 28 at 8:00 am to Friday, November 15 at 5:00 pm.  This is your opportunity to choose the benefits that will best meet your needs throughout 2020.  Retirement elections are not part of the Health & Welfare Open Enrollment.  Changes to retirement elections may be made at any time during the year. 

Retirement contribution changes that you wish to be effective January 1, 2020 must be submitted between:

  • Biweekly Payroll: December 16 - December 26, 2020
  • Monthly Payroll: January 1 - January 15, 2020

Open Enrollment ends Friday, November 15, 2019, at 5:00 p.m.


We encourage you to review your current coverage options to ensure they meet you and your family's needs in the coming year.  For more information on benefit plans for 2020, please review the Summary of Changes. Updates include a more generous birth and adoption leave policy for parents, as well as modest changes to select benefits in response to increased costs to the university over the last several years. We have attempted to limit the impact of these changes on current faculty and staff and to make changes only to benefits that have not recently increased in cost to you. 


Do You Need to Participate in Open Enrollment?
  • If you do not have an FSA or HSA and do not want to make any changes, you do not need to do anything.
  • If you have an FSA or HSA, you must re-enroll every year. If you do not re-enroll, you will not receive benefits in 2020.
  • Retirement deferrals do not need to be made during Open Enrollment. They can be changed any time during the year.

How To Access Health & Welfare Open Enrollment
  1. Log in to the myHR Self Service Portal using your NetID and password. Problems Logging In?
  2. Select the Benefits tile and then click My Open Enrollment Elections on the left side of the screen. If nothing happens, you will need to turn off your pop-up blocker. Pop-Up Blocker Guide
  3. Click the Enroll Now button on the right side of screen. A step-by-step guide is available to assist you through the enrollment process.

Commuter benefit changes can be made at

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How To Access Retirement Elections

Changes to retirement contributions may be made at any time during the year. You do not need to re-enroll each year, as current contribution elections roll over to the next year. Retirement contribution changes that you wish to be effective January 1, 2020 must be submitted between:

  • Biweekly Payroll: December 16 - December 26, 2020
  • Monthly Payroll: January 1 - January 15, 2020

To make changes, see the Retirement Plan Step-by-Step Guide.

Investment fund changes are made directly with Fidelity and/or TIAA.

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Explore total rewards

At Northwestern, we are proud to provide meaningful benefits support and peace of mind through competitive programs that include high-quality health care plans, retirement benefits, tuition discounts and more. 

Use our benefit-finder for an overview of all we have to offer.

Enroll or change benefits

Benefit eligibility

University employees — like staff, faculty, visiting scholars — and their spouses and dependent children are eligible for benefits. Eligibility for benefits varies based on employment classification.
Benefit eligibility

Benefit changes

Change your benefit elections during Open Enrollment or when you experience an IRS Qualifying Event, such as adding a child to your family, getting married, or changing positions.
Benefit changes
All resources on benefits changes, eligibility and enrollment.

Help with benefits

Find resources that may be helpful as you manage your Northwestern benefits. If you have any questions or concerns — either during benefits enrollment or any time throughout the year — please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Upcoming Events

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Schedule a Meeting with a Benefit Counselor