Documenting Goals and Objectives to Define Plan Success
How do you define success? There are many reasons that you may have adopted a plan – the personal benefits of tax reduction and retirement income, a benefit to recruit and retain employees, etc. Your vision likely includes simplicity by outsourcing the work and regulatory compliance.
The DOL keeps a close eye on plan stewards, referred to as fiduciaries, to ensure that the interests of plan participants are adequately served. If you are not sure if your plan is meeting the needs of your employees, you should ask yourself if your approach can withstand the scrutiny of the DOL and a Class Action Attorney.
There are eight key issues that must be addressed in order to have a successful plan.
You need to:
- Document goals and objectives and current plan shortfalls.
- Develop a statement of investment policy.
- Monitor plan assets.
- Document standards of care.
- Select and monitor service providers.
- Understand plan expenses.
- Understand participant communication guidelines.
- Stay informed of changes that affect the plan.
The Vision Session™ assists fiduciaries in determining the needs of the plan and its participants, and in defining the plan’s goals and objectives. Using this tool, we’ll:
- Review what makes a plan successful.
- Define your vision of success.
- Determine how well you are fulfilling your plan management responsibilities.
- Identify service shortfalls in your plan.
- Identify potential alternatives to help you pursue plan success.
This step is designed to gauge what you want from your plan, define your plan’s and your participants’ needs, and give you an idea of how well what you are doing.
Keep reading to learn about strategies for complying with your fiduciary responsibilities and managing your liability. In the Design section, we discuss the tools that may help you fulfill your legal responsibilities as a fiduciary.