A recent Empower survey found that small business owners are likely to consider open multiple employer plans (MEPs).
The majority of small business owners agreed that offering a retirement plan for employees is “the right thing to do,” and cited this as their primary reason for offering a plan, reports Empower. This outnumbered ‘employee retention’ and ‘attracting talent,’ as both placed second and third in reasons for retirement plan implementation.
Of the 66% who responded in favor of the plans, 55% stated the likelihood of lowered costs for themselves is their top reason for supporting MEPs, while 54% said they were interested in reduced fees for employees. Forty-nine percent stated the variety of plan and fund options to meet employee needs was their top interest, and 29% indicated this as the most important thing when considering an MEP. In fact, the research makes a point that while MEP expansion would benefit small business owners, it can only succeed should it offer multiple plan and fund options for employees, and lessened costs.
According to the survey, 89% of small business owners agreed that positive outcomes associated in adding retirement plans for employees overshadowed potential downsides, and 86% said their company feels a “strong sense” of responsibility in providing financial education. Eighty-five percent indicated how significant an employee’s retirement readiness is to overall retirement benefits success.
While MEPs continuously receive support from the retirement industry, policymakers have failed so far to pass legislation allowing for them. In October , the Department of Labor’s (DOL)’s Employees Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) proposed regulations to expand access to MEPs, but industry stakeholders were disappointed the proposal does not address open MEPs.