The 834 File: Improving your experience

Setting up a file feed is just the beginning to a streamlined broker experience. Our EDI team shared the following advice to enhance your workflow.

General tips

  • Start with one carrier and get comfortable with that carrier’s 834 process. We recommend starting with the big group or groups that are cumbersome to manage manually. Once you go through the process a few times, you’ll be able to add groups in no time.
  • The more feeds you setup, the easier it will be to understand and quickly correct errors. Practice makes perfect!
  • Create documents and standard operating procedures to delegate the process to someone else on the team or HR.

File testing

  • Simplify your billing before testing. Many departments and divisions can result in even more codes that need to be mapped in order to be output on the file.
  • If you are asked to complete scenario testing for already established carriers, see if you can bypass the scenario testing as the carrier is already established.
  • Audit and compare your group’s data to the carrier’s data prior to testing to lower the amount of errors received.

Managing errors

  • Understand common errors that prevent an entire file from processing.
  • Get HR involved. Teach them how to resolve the errors; they know the employee and dependent data better than you do.


  • Create timelines for each group’s renewal to stay ahead.
  • Do not wait until the last minute to start; Q4 is a stressful time of year and the right planning can prepare you and reduce the workload.
  • Document each carrier’s process to simplify it if you need to implement it again.
  • Delegate some responsibilities to the HR.

Following these tips will help you reduce your workload to take on more clients and scale up! To read more about 834 EDI, check out our previous blog post.