For Employers: Retirement Plans

Provide a retirement plan without getting stuck in paperwork, taking unnecessary risks, or giving your employees a lousy deal.

A retirement plan requires a modest amount of work, and you may need to pay fees to service providers. So, what’s the point? Most businesses can benefit from a retirement plan in several ways.

  • Save for your future so you have liquid assets later (your business might not generate cash immediately)
  • Attract and retain valuable employees — if you have any employees (self-employed individuals can set up plans too)
  • Manage taxes so you can potentially pay less or pay when you want with features like Roth 401k or pre-tax contributions. Verify your specifics with a CPA (Approach Financial is not a tax service)
  • Qualify for tax credits (in some cases) for establishing a plan for your employees
  • Borrow against plan assets if you ever need access to the money

If you’re a financial advisor, let’s talk about partnering.

Services for Employers

Retirement plans can seem intimidating, but with guidance, you can find a plan that works well for your business. Ideally, that means the plan:

  1. Meets your objectives (rewarding employees or minimizing taxes, for example)
  2. Is affordable to run
  3. Complies with all applicable laws

To help with those objectives, Approach Financial, Inc. provides retirement plan consulting. You can choose to work with me under several models, including full service, hourly or project consulting, or employee education and enrollment meetings.

Full Service

Most employers want a plan, and they don’t have the personnel available to establish, monitor, and maintain a plan. Full-service offerings include:

  • Vendor comparison and selection
  • Plan setup for startup plans (yes, I love small plans and new plans)
  • Trustee Meetings at least annually
  • Coordinating with third-party administrators (TPAs) and other service providers
  • Investment advice on the plan menu
  • Employee education and enrollment support through:
    • One-on-one or group discussions
    • Live and on-demand video sessions
    • In-person visits, at an additional cost
  • Consulting on plan compliance and best practices
  • Fee benchmarking and vendor comparisons
  • Serving as a fiduciary advisor to the plan and plan participants
  • Transitioning to new providers, if necessary (you can stay where you are if you’re happy and you’re using quality providers)
  • Ongoing monitoring and service
  • Adaptation as the world changes
  • And more

Consulting Services

If you prefer not to have a financial advisor on your plan, you can handle everything yourself. But you might want some help getting things set up or fixing problems. I’m happy to provide consulting services on the following topics:

  • Understanding how a retirement plan might fit your business
  • Discussion of various retirement plan options (defined benefit, defined contribution, SIMPLE, SEP, etc.)
  • Vendor comparison and selection
  • Plan setup
  • Investment lineup and investment policy statement
  • And more

Employee Education and Enrollment

Your employees most likely need help understanding how to use the plan. It’s not their fault — schools don’t always teach personal finance topics. Plus, the world continues to evolve, and employees may not know about the latest tools or best practices for managing their finances.

Enrollment meetings: For new employees, I can meet with groups or individual participants — online or in person — when they become eligible to enter the plan:

  • Overview of how retirement plans work
  • Education on features like matching, Roth 401(k), and more
  • Basic investment education
  • Guidance on which investments might be appropriate
  • Help with estimating retirement income needs
  • How the retirement plan fits with other aspects of their financial lives
  • And more

Education events: Employees typically need ongoing help. Their lives and finances change, markets and world events make them question their decisions, and plan provisions evolve. Let’s keep them up-to-speed so they’re equipped to make smart decisions.

  • Updates on retirement and other topics
  • Basic financial wellness topics: budgeting, credit scores, and more
  • Investment basics and the investing environment
  • How to plan for goals like retirement, education, and more

Experience Matters

Before launching Approach Financial, Inc., I was with a small practice for 14 years that served roughly 100 retirement plans. Those plans were primarily 401(k) plans, but we worked with other employer plans as well.

My experience is mainly micro plans, including new “startup” plans, and those with less than $5 million. However, I’ve served bigger plans as well. Other advisors may be reluctant to work with these “small” plans, but I’m happy to help small employers gain access to the retirement marketplace.

To offer high-quality service to clients, I keep the following industry designations:

  • Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®)
  • Professional Plan Consultant (PPC®), an Fi360 designation for individuals committed to serving employer-sponsored retirement plans and promoting successful participant outcomes
Ready to learn more? Call or write today to start the conversation! I don’t earn any commissions for selling products, and you can choose from one-time or ongoing services. You can also explore hourly 401(k) plan consulting.