Viewing entries in
Financial Wellness

Don’t Forget the Point of your 401k... Retirement Readiness

Don’t Forget the Point of your 401k... Retirement Readiness

What is the point of your 401k plan?   No, this is not a trick question, just a reality check.  Often a 401k plan is one of those things a business must have to compete for employees, to fit in, to meet employee expectations.  Sometimes we forget that the real purpose of a 401k program is to provide a way for employees to retire someday. 

Your Employees’ Financial Health can impact your Bottom-line!

Your Employees’ Financial Health can impact your Bottom-line!

Did you know that financial education could help save up to $2,000 per employee annually through increased productivity, reduced health care costs, and better utilization of employee benefits; and research and analysis indicates a 3:1 return on employer investment in education? *

Building a Successful Retirement Plan - Part 6: Participant Engagement

Building a Successful Retirement Plan - Part 6: Participant Engagement

Many plan sponsors do not realized the importance of participant engagement. A strong participant program can dramatically influence plan participation, employee deferral rates, and even overall employee financial health.  Employers who provide financial education to employees are taking steps to improve employees’ lives and even the business as a whole.

Building a Successful Retirement Plan - Part 3:  The Investments

Building a Successful Retirement Plan - Part 3: The Investments

A plan’s investment lineup can have a dramatic impact not only on the cost of a plan, but can influence retirement outcomes.  Failure to manage fund selection and fund expenses can not only lead to poor performance, but can sometimes create a rift, or even legal issues between plan sponsor and participants.  Just like plan management, the investment choices within a retirement program cannot be ignored, but must be managed and updated over time.  Plan sponsors cannot assume that if nobody is complaining everything must be okay. 

Building a Successful Retirement Plan - Part 2: Plan Design & Plan Management

Building a Successful Retirement Plan - Part 2: Plan Design & Plan Management

Before we can talk about retirement readiness, executive compensation, recruiting and retaining employees, your plan must meet all the required regulations and strive to implement best practices in the areas of recordkeeping, administration and plan design.  Additionally, your plan must be designed to accomplish the goals for your organization.  Your purpose for your plan will determine the features and options that are established in your plan document for the benefit of your participants.

Building a Successful Retirement Plan - Part 1: Getting Started

Building a Successful Retirement Plan - Part 1: Getting Started

As a retirement plan advisor, our job is to help employers to make their retirement plan successful.  Companies define success in different ways, but the first step in any engagement is for us understand what employers hope to accomplish with a retirement program. 

Financial Education Not Enough for Employees

Financial Education Not Enough for Employees

It may no longer be enough for employers to simply provide employees with education about savings and retirement.  According to a recent Bankrate survey,  63% of Americans cannot manage a $500 financial emergency.1 A do-it-yourself approach to improving spending and saving behaviors assumes that employees have the skill and initiative to address their own financial condition. 

Six8 Advisors believes that many people could benefit from working with an advisor that helps them create a plan, monitor its progress, and serve as an ongoing financial resource.  This seems simple, but fee-based advice is often out of reach because the financial advisory community excludes potential clients by imposing large hourly rates or upfront planning fees.  The result is that the households that often need the most help are left to figure it out on their own. 

The Six8 Advice @ Work program provides a cost effective financial wellness and planning process for clients willing to engage with their financial future. Employers are in a unique position to provide access to advisors by taking an interest in their employees.   We often ask our employer clients, “Is your retirement plan successful?”.  Does your plan provide the ability for your employees to retire on their own financial terms?  For decades many employers saw their role as simply a plan sponsor when in fact they could have done more by offering their employees access to financial support.

Employees need to take action now.  With volatility in the financial markets increasing, and some economists projecting an average balanced portfolio return in the 4% - 5% range2, then employees are faced with more than just a retirement issue, they are faced with a lifestyle issue.  American households need to get a grip on spending and saving. Employers can play an important role in providing access to much needed financial advice as part of their employees retirement plans.

1 http://www.bankrate.com/finance/consumer-index/money-pulse-1215.aspx

2 Vanguard Research Paper “ Asset Allocation In A Low-Yield And Volatile Environment” September 2011