When choosing the investment platform for your plan, there are many things to consider! The size, provisions and investment philosophies differ greatly between investment companies and it is hard to tell the difference between them. Your NorthStar Financial Partners advisor can navigate through the complexities of the providers to match you with the right platform.
The answers to the following questions will help us to guide you to the best recordkeeper/investment provider for you: What is the size of your Plan? How many employees? What is the approximate total value of participant accounts? How much is contributed to the Plan each year? How percentage of your employees participate? Do you offer an employee match when they participate?
The size of your plan, along with the average participant account size or minimum annual contributions can give your plan discounts in the pricing of your plan. If you have not compared pricing in the last 3 years, you should, as fee reductions are very competitive in today’s 401(k) plan world.
In addition, are your participants generally funneled into target date investment accounts? You cannot give them investment guidance as a trustee, but are they getting any help? One of the disadvantages of target-based funds is that you cannot tell what investment package is actually in the fund without doing research. The average participant may not take the time to learn, so they may not engage in the plan as much as they would if they knew more about it. We believe a better engaged participant will most likely be more successful and appreciate the benefit given to them by you.
As Investment Fiduciaries for your Plan, your NorthStar Financial Partners advisor will use the skills that we extend to our individual clients to your employees. We will personally help them with enrollment, investment changes, and advise as a participant. We provide risk-based model portfolios for the plan, allowing your employees to see what investments they are choosing. It is our goal for your employees to easily be able to learn and follow along as their account grows. We monitor the investment managers and allocations to try to achieve better results.
We believe that service is the # 1 reason that our Plan Sponsors come to us and stay with us over the years. Our investment knowledge and commitment to the Plan Sponsors and the individual participant are our priorities. It is our passion to help you to succeed!