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Plan Participant Education Helps Company Employees

Plan participant education helps a company’s employees understand the retirement plan options.

However, few companies take the time and make the effort to educate every employee with one-on-one meetings.

After a recent Plan Sponsor University (TPSU) Fiduciary Education Program at the Arlington Virginia campus of Virginia Tech, Mr. Fred Barstein, Founder and CEO of TPSU interviewed Michelle who oversees Human Resources and Payroll.  They discussed the benefits that the plan participants and the plan sponsor have observed with the one-on-one meetings for every employee upon their reaching their six-month milestone with the company.  Plan participant education brings great benefits to the plan participants.

Full Transcript Here

Fred Barstein:

Fred Barstein here with 401kTV. We just completed TPSU program in Arlington, Virginia, at the Virginia Tech campus here. I’m here with Michelle Welcome, Michelle.

Michelle:
Hi, how are you today?

Fred Barstein:
I’m good. Thank you. Okay if we ask you a few questions?

Michelle:
No problem.

Fred Barstein:
Before we do, tell our audience a little bit about yourself, and the size of your organization.

Michelle:
Well, my name is Michelle, and I work for a medium-sized organization, about 250 people.

Fred Barstein:
Right, and what’s your role?

Michelle:
I am HR and payroll.

Fred Barstein:
Very good.

Michelle:
A woman of many hats.

Fred Barstein:
Many hats. Your charm is one of them.

Michelle:
Absolutely.

Fred Barstein:
One of the things you talked about is, your group has a negative option on the 101. Explain what that means.

Michelle:
Well, the way that our 401K program is set up. You are eligible for enrollment after six months of employment. Once you hit the six-month threshold, you are provided with a meeting time with our advisor to opt into our 401K program at that time. They are given a 30-minute window where you would be able to discuss what options you have.

Fred Barstein:
Right.

Michelle:
During that time, how the plan can work for you. And, then a [inaudible 00:01:30] provides some long-term information, as well as, the benefits it could provide. If you do not want to be in the 401K program, you would need to elect out of it at that time.

Fred Barstein:
But, you’re automatically expected to be meeting with that advisor.

Michelle:
Absolutely, the meeting is automatically set up after six months [crosstalk 00:01:51].

Fred Barstein:
Why would you do that?

Michelle:
We wanted to make sure that every employee had the opportunity to be able to learn about the 401k program, and have a resource where they would be able to sit down and see if the plan would be a good option for them, and would work for them.

Fred Barstein:
What are you seeing? What are the benefits? Are people enrolling, engaging in that?

Michelle:
Absolutely, we have seen definite benefits. The one-on-one meetings have caused there to be a spike in enrollment for us. So, we are definitely seeing the advantages of having this mandatory 101 meeting after six months of employment with the advisors.

Fred Barstein:
I think it’s very unique and brilliant. So, congratulations.

Michelle:
All right, I thank you so much.

Fred Barstein:
Just a final, couple of things, that you may want to do from something you learned in the program when you get back in the office.

Michelle:
Our company had not been auto-enrolled with 401k, and that’s definitely something I’m going to take back to the company and express the benefits of the auto-enroll, and auto-increase. We definitely will be implementing those soon.

Fred Barstein:
Very good. Well, congratulations, Michelle. Thanks for spending time with us today on 401kTV. And, thank you for watching. Stay tuned.

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