Recruiting Through Retirement Planning

Making financial planning convenient greatly increases plan participation.

To say that retirement planning is a brave, new world is becoming quite the understatement. In its latest U.S. Employee Benefit Trends Study, MetLife uncovered a surprising statistic: 53 percent of employees surveyed say that financial planning programs are important for increasing their loyalty to their employers.

Unfortunately, employers aren’t getting the memo. That same study shows that just 18 percent currently offer financial planning programs. It’s not as though they don’t see the value, either: 36 percent of employers agree that wellness benefits and financial planning programs are valued by their employees. And 83 percent of employers surveyed are calling retention a top priority of their benefits program.

Yet many plan sponsors are unsure where to start. Here are some strategies you can present to your plan sponsors that can help their employees achieve their retirement goals:

Workshops. Beyond the annual benefits presentation and Q&A, retirement advisors can suggest a periodic schedule of financial planning sessions that help plan participants understand their options and get answers that could improve their outcomes.

Personal financial coaching. Help your plan sponsors make financial planning a partnership. By holding one-on-one sessions with plan participants, you can help your clients improve the overall satisfaction level their employees have with their benefits program.

Regular email campaigns. Plan sponsors can vastly improve an employee’s financial literacy simply by offering financial content in their email. Work with plan sponsors to develop a regular delivery schedule that highlights what plan participants are most interested in knowing.

Online tools. For those plan participants wanting to go it alone, help your plan sponsors develop an online portal of financial planning tools. Calculators, article repositories, and explanations of investment options are good options.

Onsite service. Making financial planning convenient greatly increases plan participation. Hold workshops and coaching during breaks and lunch hours. Schedule coaching before and after work hours. In other words, make it easy for participants to actively participate in their retirement planning.


Why it Matters

According to a Wells Fargo white paper, the financial wellness of employees gained through voluntary benefits programs such as financial planning improves their productivity, reduces health care costs (stress-related illness), and improve retention rates.

For retirement advisors looking to improve their own client loyalty, helping plan sponsors build engagement processes around their voluntary benefits can help improve plan participation, employee satisfaction and company loyalty.

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