The Guardian Insurance & Annuity Company Inc. (GIAC) has enhanced its website to improve the administration, management and utilization of defined contribution (DC) plans for small businesses.
Education and guidance to influence how plan participants engage with their retirement plans are particularly important as 401(k)s and other defined contribution plans are the largest anticipated source of retirement income, Guardian says. Several features— a dashboard with easy access to key retirement plan health statistics, enhanced reporting options, intuitive navigation and a resource library—aim to improve the overall experience for plan sponsors, third-party administrators (TPAs) and plan participants.
The Guardian IncomeConnect Calculator alerts plan participants in real-time if they are on target to meet their retirement goals. In its recent RetireWell study on small plans, Guardian found that individuals are likely to contribute more to their 401(k)s if they know how much their current contributions will provide in future retirement income. The calculator translates current savings into retirement income and provides a real-time gap analysis. If a savings shortfall is detected, the website suggests educational tools and resources to help the plan participant close the gap.
Guardian says the website will reduce the administrative burden on financial professionals, TPAs and plan sponsors, and enable them to review plan data and indicators for a snapshot of what’s happening in the plan at any point in time. The website also now offers eDelivery for plan sponsor summary statements and participant quarterly statements.
The RetireWell Study found a general level of satisfaction among Americans for their 401(k) plans, but also revealed that most do not take full advantage of the benefits, points out Douglas Dubitsky, vice president of Guardian Retirement Solutions. “Guardian has redesigned our site to improve our clients’ Web experience so that it’s easier and faster to retrieve important plan information in real time,” he explains. “Participants may be more engaged with their 401(k)s if their retirement plan information and educational resources are easy to access and understand.”More information about the site’s enhancements is on Guardian’s website.