Sixty percent of third party administrators (TPAs) are very satisfied with their primary retirement service provider, giving them a score of seven or six on a scale of one to seven, Chatham Partners found in its fourth annual TPA Satisfaction and Needs Assessment Study. In contrast, 13% are very dissatisfied with their primary retirement service provider, giving them a score of three or below.
While these scores appear to show a strong comfort level with their service providers, the percentage of those satisfied has dropped and the percentage of those dissatisfied has increased from earlier years. In 2014, 67% of TPAs were very satisfied with their service providers and in 2013, 68% were. In 2014, 11% were very dissatisfied with their service providers and in 2013, only 6% were.
Asked what criteria they look to when selecting a provider, the first thing TPAs cite is website functionality (57%), followed by plan installation services (39%), plan sponsor services (34%), service personnel (32%) and participant services (26%).
“The results illustrate that TPAs’ expectations for service and user friendly technology continue to rise, and the industry is challenged to keep pace,” says Joshua Dietch, managing director at Chatham Partners. “Tomorrow’s winners will do so through increasing communication and coverage, providing better technological functionality, and improving reporting and the accessibility of reports.”
The study is based on interviews with 213 TPAs, asking them about 19 leading retirement service providers with respect to their support services, personnel, technology, product and service offerings and overall impressions. The full report can be downloaded here.