Employee Education Meetings – One Size Does Not Fit All. Just as communications to employees should vary based on age or job type, employee meetings should also be customized to fit different types of workers. At a TPSU meeting held at The College of NJ, the benefits manager at a 10,000 employee enterprise discussed their approach and how it affected retirement outcomes.
The company has many locations, some with office workers as well as some manufacturing plants. So rather than have the same type of meeting for all employees, they decided to conduct benefit fairs for office workers and conduct one on one meetings in the cafeteria for production workers. Not only were the different meetings intended to be more effective for the employees, the benefits manager was sensitive to the needs of the production managers who might not have wanted employees off the plant floor to attend a fair.
Results? Many employees attended the meetings and the company saw an increase in deferral rates.
Costs? Because the plan’s 401k recordkeeper coordinated and held these meetings, there was no cost to the company and little impact on their time. But the key is that the company asked for these additional meetings, not in the original contract which the record keeper was happy to grant eventually winning increased business from the company.
And you don’t have to be a large company to get special services – many record keepers and advisors are more than willing to help as most plan sponsors are afraid to ask or don’t realize the depth of services offered. The 401k recordkeeper industry is consolidating with few providers remaining – larger ones have increased resources to offered customized communications and meetings and, in a competitive world, are willing to provide them to clients at little or no additional costs.
Understand what you need – or what issues you and your employees face – and then ask for help. You’ll be surprised at the results. Or, you might need to shop your plan to see what else is available.
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