401(k) Plan Services
By working with you each step of the way, we design your retirement benefit plan to achieve results. We guide you through the process, communicate with employees, provide participant education, and ensure regulatory compliance.
Our experienced CFAs and CPAs walk our clients through the often-confusing retirement plan landscape. There are a host of retirement plan options, such as whether to provide a company match, include a profit sharing provision, offer a Roth option, and several others. We will review your current plan document and help you decide which options are right for your company and employees.
Before recommending any changes to your current plan, service providers or investment menu we complete a comprehensive review, including a full cost analysis, to ensure your plan meets all your fiduciary obligations.
Investment Selection as a fiduciary
Numerous studies have shown that the vast majority of mutual funds under-perform their benchmarks, particularly over longer time periods, reducing returns for plan participants. We remove the risk of under-performance, and of participant dissatisfaction, by using index funds. Historically, index funds have outperformed most actively-managed funds merely by tracking the market and keeping costs low.
We bring a menu of index funds and indexed target date funds that help ensure your participants earn fair returns over time. Poor investment performance has been a source of recent participant lawsuits, so making sure your funds are performing well is an important component of building a fair and honest plan.
One of the most important components of plan oversight is making sure documentation is up to date. We will review your plan document, make sure your Form 5500 properly reflects the details of your plan, and draft or update your investment policy statement. We will also provide quarterly monitoring reports of your plan’s investment funds to ensure you are informed.
The Department of Labor is cracking down on retirement plans that charge unreasonably high fees, incur poor performance, and/or generally fail to meet their fiduciary obligations. While DOL audits are rare, even very small plans have gone through them. Having a robust plan with fair costs and good documentation can go a long way toward saving you time and money if you are ever the subject of an audit.
Participant lawsuits are also a risk. For-profit corporations, not-for-profit organizations, higher educational institutions, and even small businesses have all been the subject of recent litigation. Diving down costs, offering sound investments, and providing on-going education can help avoid a costly lawsuit.
It is essential that your employees are well-informed about the importance of saving and the available retirement options on their menu. Many participants may not have the time or interest to learn on their own so we provide regular educational sessions to help provide the information they need to make smart retirement decisions.
We strive to make these interactions informative, yet personal. Discussions may include:
- Individualized investment advice at one-on-one meetings
- Periodic group employee education and enrollment seminars
- A progressive curriculum of investment topics important to participants
- A regular review of the plan and its performance
- Online tools that participants can access anytime to make changes to their investments or to learn more about the plan and its investments