Selecting a recordkeeper is
critical for retirement plans, and surveys that PLANSPONSOR and
PLANADVISER conduct every year reveal a vast array of services that recordkeepers provide.
is also interesting to note the disparities between what retirement
plan advisers and sponsors look for when selecting a recordkeeper.
Advisers take more of an analytical, business-oriented approach than
sponsors, whose focus is on the practicalities of offerings. The 2016 PLANADVISER Practice Benchmarking Survey
found that the top three criteria advisers look for when selecting a
recordkeeper are value for price (42%), fee structure for plan (29%) and
investment options available (12%).
The 2016 PLANSONSOR Defined Contribution Survey,
on the other hand, shows that sponsors evaluate a wide array of
services from their recordkeepers. On a scale of 1 to 7, with 7 being
excellent, the services sponsors find most useful are compliance support
and testing (6.46), service team responsiveness (6.46), Form 5500
processing (6.45), legislative and regulatory updates (6.38), service
team industry knowledge (6.38) and plan communications (6.35).
A third survey, the 2016 PLANADVISER Recordkeeper Services Guide
discloses that recordkeepers offer a number of services beyond those
mentioned above. All of the 24 recordkeepers surveyed this year provide
education and enrollment support. Eighty-five percent provide plan
benchmarking supports; 83% supply legislative updates; 83% help with
plan design; and 75% help with rollovers, investment monitoring and
investment policy statements (IPS). Sixty-six percent offer lead
generation services to advisers, and the same percentage make Employee
Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) counsel available.NEXT: What to consider when selecting a recordkeeper