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Choosing a Retirement Plan Advisor

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Retirement plans are an important benefit for plan sponsors and their employees. Your retirement plan advisor can offer sound advice in the management of those plans. When selecting and working with a retirement plan advisor, consider the following points to maximize plan results:

Plan Possibilities
Set plan objectives with your advisor, which may go beyond the current offering. Then determine the opportunities and resources and to fulfill this potential to enhance the plan for all stakeholders.

Plan Design
Your retirement plan advisor can provide insight on how to leverage potential plan design features within the 401(k), profit sharing, cash balance and defined benefit arena to meet your objectives. We can then collaborate with professionals to evaluate executive compensation and ESOP opportunities. Plan design is a business or settlor function which may not require fiduciary duty.

As a sponsor of a qualified retirement plan, you have a fiduciary duty to act in the best interest of participants. Share or delegate certain responsibilities such as ERISA 3(16) Administration and 3(21) or 3(38) Investment duties.

Cost & Value
Consider the liability and impact in future value to participants due to the differences in expenses compounded over a career. Your advisor can help you identify plan expenses such as third party administrators, record keepers, investments and advisors, to create fee transparency and helping to keep costs reasonable.

You and your advisor can create an investment policy statement and investment menu that aligns with plan objectives and participant behaviors. Selecting and monitoring an investment menu that emphasizes simplicity, asset allocation, diversification and low fees can prevent overwhelming participants. Reducing fees and using style-pure investment vehicles, may reduce the risk of participants’ underperformance and your liability as a sponsor.

Participant Education
Your advisor can work to educate plan participants on how their behavior impacts their financial future. Helping them better understand and execute the process of wealth accumulation while employed, and income distribution in retirement.

Deploy an independent advisor to benchmark plan providers and services. Your advisor should remain attentive, plus support processes with service providers to ensure your plan runs smoothly. Ultimately, the goal is to leverage an advisor which empowers both sponsors and participants to focus on what matters most.

Improved Outcomes
An advisor that also possesses wealth management knowledge is valuable to support financial wellness among participants. By partnering with you and plan providers, your advisor may help deliver healthy plan metrics and retirement readiness to benefit both the employee and employer.

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