You are on the clock…


Another NFL draft is in the books and the massive defensive end from The University of South Carolina was the number one overall pick going to the Houston Texans.  The amount of analysis and preparation that goes into the draft is astonishing.  Everyone from the owner, general manager, coaches, player personnel and scouts play a role in who the team selects.  Each of those staff members knows what they are accountable for because their responsibilities are well defined. Draft night comes and goes with a fury of “controlled chaos,” as teams huddle around tables in what some dub “war rooms”.


Like the NFL draft, a lot of preparation goes into managing a retirement plan. With all the rules and regulations, it can seem like an impossible task at times. Your retirement committee might not have the same resources as the Green Bay Packers or Dallas Cowboys, but the good news is you are not alone. When it comes to designing a retirement plan, you not only have your financial professional, but the Principal Financial Group® in your corner.  In the retirement world, knowing what hat your retirement committee members should wear is known as governance. Practicing good governance helps mitigate the risk of your retirement plan and is step one towards success.


Traditionally the NFL draft consists of seven rounds and has been a two-day event during the early weeks of April.  The draft has always received high television ratings, so a change in format was not necessary. However, this didn’t stop the NFL from seeking an even wider audience. What some perceived as risky and unpopular, the league recently moved the draft to May and expanded the event to four days. When something is not considered broken, believing in change and foreseeing a good outcome can be difficult. The skeptics were proven wrong, as the 2014 NFL draft received record ratings, reaching over 32 million viewers.1


Making positive changes to something that is already working is currently happening in the retirement industry.  From having the ability to set up automatic plan features to stretching your matching contribution there are many possibilities to help capture a wider audience.  The automatic plan features can include automatic enrollment of your employees and automatic escalation of their deferral rates. Enrolling participants at a higher rate, such as 6 percent with an automatic annual 1 percent increase, may bring out some skepticism. These features coupled with the ability to design a plan that will maximize your retirement budget and have the potential to show more measurable results can quickly change the game.  Discuss these plan features with your financial professional to help make sure your retirement plan objectives achieve the outcomes your participants need to retire…the clock is ticking.

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