Almost half of employees simply guess at how much they will need to save for retirement, according to the Transamerica Institute.
When your employees retire, you want them to avoid making mistakes that can have a drastic impact on the savings they’ve accumulated over their careers.
Do your employees know how much retirement income they can expect? Have they prepared their investment portfolios for living in retirement? Have they taken all of the necessary steps to receive payment on their terms?
If your employees are getting anywhere near retirement age and can’t answer all of these questions with a “yes,” then make sure your retirement plan provider can offer some customized, professional assistance for your employees.
Personalized investment guidance can engage your employees in preparing for their long-term financial security. Be sure that your employees, at all levels of your organization, feel comfortable and confident using this assistance to plan their retirement.
In the summer of 2016, Mike Blubaugh, senior vice president/chief financial officer at Whitefish (Mont.) Credit Union, decided to get some guidance about preparing financially for retirement. He has a diverse portfolio, and he knew that properly positioning all of its elements for retirement wouldn’t be simple.
So he did two things he does routinely when managing Whitefish Credit Union’s assets: gather guidance from a variety of respected sources, and seek consensus from key stakeholders before enacting a strategy.
Blubaugh spoke with at least four qualified financial professionals about his situation over a month or two, but none offered him a plan personalized enough to meet his specific needs. He found the personalized financial advice he and his wife needed by consulting with the financial representatives from his retirement plan provider.
Blubaugh knew he needed to consider his financial data and future needs with the other key stakeholder, his wife. Although, his wife is firmly risk averse, Blubaugh is accustomed to gaining consensus on asset management with a risk-averse credit union board.
He knows that thorough, realistic calculations and documentation are critical. He made sure to choose a provider that could meet his needs.
Retirement plan guidance is also invaluable for front-line staff. Janet Jones held various member service positions during her 35 years at Georgia’s Own Credit Union in Atlanta. Eight months before retirement, she learned that her retirement plan provider had a team of licensed financial representatives that participating employees could call for education and a variety of financial services. She took advantage of this program to help with her transition to retirement.
After Jones decided on a payout plan, she had a limited window to get all of the paperwork completed, notarized, and submitted, or there would be a gap between her final paycheck and her retirement payouts. She was able to receive her retirement income on time with the help of her representative.
In a 2016 retirement survey, two out of three workers agreed they do not know as much as they should about retirement investing. Set yourself and your employees up for success by thoroughly vetting and selecting a retirement plan provider that will be there with personalized investment guidance to help you and your staff through every stage of retirement planning.
CHAD LAY is a retirement relationship manager with CUNA Mutual Retirement Solutions.