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TROY, Mich. -- Indiana Jones, beware: You have a clone-like cousin roaming your home turf.
With a mauve fedora brim slanted down toward his eyes, a colorfully drawn Indiana Budd stars in The Budd Co.'s personalized benefits statement showing employees how their benefits help them navigate life's adventures.
The 10-page, 7-by-81/2-inch booklet features Indiana Budd in several illustrations accompanying descriptions of the company's employee benefit programs, as well as personalized benefit information for employees.
For example, one page shows Indiana Budd walking proudly out of the company's Kendallville, Ind., manufacturing plant; the picture is adjacent to information about the company's base-pay policies. In another drawing, Indiana Budd is holding a big tooth; next to him is a description of dental benefits. Retirement and savings plan information abuts a picture of Indiana Budd watching boaters on a calm blue lake with a bright sun in the background.
Charts, graphs and headlines carry through the bright color scheme of yellow, blue, green, purple and orange.
"The color is something that attracts readership," commented Bill Kroger, corporate manager of labor relations at Budd's Troy, Mich., headquarters. The Budd Co. is an automotive parts supplier with approximately 20 plants. The Kendallville, Ind., facility employs about 300 hourly workers who make plastic body panels for cars.
The booklet, titled "Indiana Budd's Adventure," won an Award of Excellence in the personalized correspondence category of the 1997 Business Insurance Employee Benefits Communication Awards competition.
With the help of focus group meetings, The Budd Co. determined it needed to beef up its benefit communications for workers in the Kendallville plant, Mr. Kroger said. The company wanted a communication piece that would appeal to both men and women with an average age under 30, he added. Also, management wanted workers' family members to read the information. The booklet was mailed to employees' homes.
Anecdotal feedback about the project has been positive, Mr. Kroger said.
The Indiana facility offers workers an insured health maintenance organization and a self-insured indemnity plan.
The booklet cost a total of $39,000 to produce. The Southfield, Mich., office of Watson Wyatt Worldwide assisted in developing the communication project.