One of the biggest concerns of Plan Sponsors is the fear of low-plan participation. Imagine spending your money, time, and effort setting up a new plan for your employees, and they don’t understand or take little interest in the plan. Maybe you’ve already experienced this!
Addressing these issues head on allows you to overcome your participants' concerns and allows their plans to flourish. As you encourage and support your employees, it is also important to guide them in understanding retirement planning from a Christian perspective. Help them to recognize that retirement is not the end, but the beginning—a future stage of life when ministry starts or renews and a time when money should not be a barrier—their Future-Funded Ministry.
This exciting new way of talking about retirement allows you to lead your organization’s retirement plan process with vision and purpose.
Unfortunately, only a small percentage of eligible participants take an active role in their plan, and many participants don’t understand retirement plan investments and how to invest their money.
Here are 7 steps that can help you as you strive to create better employee participation.
Plan Administrator Engagement
It’s important for your Plan Administrator to be engaged and knowledgeable when working with your participants. The Plan Administrator is responsible for the coordination of all activities and vendor relationships.
Retirement Plan Oversight Committee Engagement
It’s also important for your Retirement Plan Oversight Committee to be engaged, knowledgeable, and fully functional. The Committee is a team of employees established to oversee your plan.
It's important to have communications, such as a Welcome Letter, Personal Retirement Guide, and Summary Plan Description to equip you as you educate your participants.
Resources and Tools
Your plan provider should have resources and tools, such as online and interactive enrollment, education, and evaluation tools that will help deliver investment knowledge and confidence that encourages enrollment, leads to wise actions, and motivates your employees toward funding their future.
Participants don’t want to rack their brains trying to understand the process of investing. For them, simple is best. That’s why it’s important to provide easy, straightforward education.
Employer Matching Contributions
In an Employer Matching Contribution Program, a participant will only receive a contribution from the employer if the participant makes a contribution on their own. Providing an employer matching contribution is a huge perk to your participants and will drive their action to participate in your retirement plan.
Monitor the Outcomes
Your plan provider should provide a quarterly report that will monitor your employee participation. It's important to read these reports so that you can understand your organization's participation.
For more on employee education, click here.