Retirement Plan Services

PLAN HEALTH DESIGN

Simple, Clean, & Fee-Only

PHD. Consulting offers a variety of services to help the employer sponsor their retirement plan, including designing and building the retirement plan, evaluating and bench-marking an existing plan, or serving in an ongoing fiduciary capacity as an adviser. We fix retirement plans. We make them easy. And we implement financial wellness programs (even if we’re not working with the retirement plan).

401(k) Plan Advisors

When an employer decides to sponsor a workplace retirement plan, they become a “Plan Fiduciary.” We are Plan Fiduciary Advisors. We’re actually Certified Plan Fiduciary Advisors (CPFA®). We always take a fiduciary role with every plan, serving in an ongoing advisory capacity as a Co-Fiduciary with the Retirement Plan Committee, or as a 3(38) Investment Manager if the employer wants us to have discretion over fund choices. We can make the plan easier to administer and mitigate liability for the employer.

As part of an ongoing engagement, we will develop a customized Health & Wellness System for each client’s retirement plan. The Health & Wellness System includes the complete Documentable & Defensible Due Diligence Process; a Service Agreement and Fee Disclosure Report; a Plan Health Analysis with a Plan Performance Scorecard and a Plan Effectiveness Rating; a customized Investment Policy Statement and Education Policy Statement; and a customized Disclosure Policy Statement.

403(b) COLLEGE PLANS

Our firm specializes in working with colleges and universities that offer 403(b) plans. Sometimes the school needs to improve service  the trustees or the plan participants. In most cases, the school is trying to manage all of the fiduciary themselves and exposing the institution to unnecessary risk.

Some service providers offer support if the plan assets are large enough to warrant that higher tier of service. But if the plan assets fall below that mark (generally $100MM) the school is underserved.

At times church-sponsored colleges are offering investments that do not reflect the core values of their school. They may not offer a Socially Responsible Investment (SRI) a Biblically Responsible Investment (BRI). The investment options conflict with the doctrinal statements of the university. BRI funds invest in companies that demonstrate values and business practices that are ethical and sustainable. 

A school doesn’t have to compromise its values for performance or compromise top performance for its values. We call this the Double Bottom Line. And yet very few church-sponsored schools have investments that would pass the Biblically Responsible Investment Institute’s 11-point screening process.

Ironically, some church-sponsored schools have “opted in” to ERISA by filing Form 5500s and conducting an expensive audit when their plans should be non-ERISA as a Qualified Church Controlled Organization (QCCO). Our team has worked successfully to help colleges re-establish their QCCO status, saving them considerable money and resources.

And it may NOT require ANY changes in the service provider. Our firm can renovate the plan without having to deconstruct it and re-build it with another provider.

FINANCIAL WELLNESS

Financial Wellness is more than just Financial Literacy

It’s certainly more than just Retirement Education. It starts with proper stewardship, knowing how to master your money (rather than having it master you). It’s about helping employees manage their entire financial picture and win the battle with debt. 

Retirement plan providers can’t fix the problem. Their solutions start with putting more money in the retirement plan. But perhaps the best advice is to eliminate debt rather than saving more, posing a conflict of interest between the retirement plan industry and financial wellness.

At PHD. Retirement Consulting, we were teaching and practicing Financial Wellness before it was   the latest fad; we were involved in Behavioral Finance and Financial Wellness even before we  were involved in fixing retirement plans. It’s in our DNA! We use the principals of Financial Peace University and Smart Dollar to offer Financial Wellness solutions. Some employers hire PHD. Consulting to manage both the retirement plan as well as the financial wellness plan. But it is also possible to hire our team to manage just the financial wellness program even if we don’t manage the retirement plan.

 

  • The Retirement Plan is governed by the Investment Policy Statement, undergirded by Retirement Education, and offered toeveryPlan Participant. An employer should hire a Certified Plan Fiduciary Advisor (CPFA®) to manage this employee benefit.
  • The Financial Wellness Plan is governed by the Education Policy Statement, undergirded by Financial Education, and offered to every employee, whether they’re in the retirement plan or not. An employer should hire a Financial Wellness Consultant to manage this employee benefit .

At PHD. we can do both.

Let us know if you need help designing or implementing a Financial Wellness Program.  We can run an ROI report to demonstrate the efficacy of investing in wellness at your workplace.

Chris Hogan and Troy Redstone at the annual conference of the Employee Benefits Institute.

Check out the video below to see how the program could work for your company.

RFP PROJECTS

 Retirement plans we serve in an ongoing fiduciary capacity are regularly benchmarked and evaluated. Periodically other employers ask us to help benchmark their plan through a formal process called RFP (Request for Proposal).

We can facilitate this project as a limited-scope RFP or a full-scope RFP.

  • We write the RFP
  • We evaluate the responses
  • We deliver a complete analysis to the trustees with recommended finalists
  • We interview the Finalists
  • We make recommendations to the trustees about which provider to hire

There are several different versions of the RFP process, whether it’s a limited-scope RFP or a full RFP.

The Silver RFP Process is the route to take if the committee has already decided to move the plan to a new service provider because it involves no analysis of the current plan.

The Gold RFP Process involves an analysis of the current plan and includes a recommendation to the committee about which service provider to hire.

The Platinum RFP Process involves a deeper analysis of the current plan as well as a formal engagement with independent ERISA counsel. This third process is recommended if there are any concerns about the compliance of the current plan.

BENCHMARKING PROJECTS

Non-Fiduciary Projects

At times an employer engages with our team on a limited-scope project basis. For instance, we might be hired to conduct a benchmarking study rather than an RFP when there is no intention of changing service providers. At other times an employer might hire our team to offer just one of the services we would normally offer as part of our comprehensive engagement when serving as the ongoing advisor to the plan, like participant education for the employees. Listed below is a common project but anything that we typically offer as part of our comprehensive services could potentially be done on an A la carte basis for a flat fee. Just ask.

 

BENCHMARKING THE QDIA

Periodically clients hire us to simply benchmark or evaluate their Qualified Default Investment Alternative (QDIA) offering. This is particularly important as retirement plans increasingly utilize auto-enrollment features which enroll employees without any investment or deferral elections. In the absence of an actual election by the plan participant, the plan sponsor can default them into a portfolio. Guidance from the Department of Labor (February, 2013) indicates that an employer should be evaluating these investment alternatives just as rigorously if not more so than other investments in the core fund lineup. Ironically, because employees are defaulted into these investment portfolios it is often where the majority of the plan assets reside, but if the portfolios are managed by the service provider that takes care of the record-keeping, they may come under the least amount of scrutiny. Our team can help you determine if you are using the appropriate QDIAs for your retirement plan and make recommendations about which QDIA to use. We can conduct a Glidepath Optimization Analysis™ to determine which portfolio fits your unique employee population, or whether a custom glidepath portfolio would be a better fit. 

Speaking Engagments

Troy Redstone, the Founder of PHD. Retirement Consulting, is more than just a “professional keynote speaker” – he is an author, consultant and leadership expert who uses public speaking as a platform to motivate and empower audiences to lead more effectively and live more purposefully. 

Troy speaks on a variety of topics related to money and finances and employees and employee benefits.

  • How to Build a Benefits Program that Works
  • Making the Workplace Work again
  • Retirement Plans made simple
  • Reducing Financial Stress at the Work
  • Mitigating Liability for the Employer

Speaking Engagments

Troy Redstone, the Founder of PHD. Retirement Consulting, is more than just a “professional keynote speaker” – he is an author, consultant and leadership expert who uses public speaking as a platform to motivate and empower audiences to lead more effectively and live more purposefully. 

Troy speaks on a variety of topics related to money and finances and employees and employee benefits.

  • How to Build a Benefits Program that Works
  • Making the Workplace Work again
  • Retirement Plans made simple
  • Reducing Financial Stress at the Work
  • Mitigating Liability for the Employer

Why choose Troy?

“The perfect blend of humor, practical application and motivation, Troy’s a crowd pleaser!”

Troy Redstone, the Founder of PHD. Retirement Consulting, is more than just a “professional keynote speaker” – he is an author, consultant and leadership expert who uses public speaking as a platform to motivate and empower audiences to lead more effectively and live more purposefully. Troy enjoys speaking with business leaders, HR professionals, CFO’s, and others tasked with the challenges of leadership. A widely accomplished professional speaker, Troy has addressed nearly 700 audiences throughout his career, from groups of a few hundred to audiences of more than 2,000. Considered a thought-leader in the retirement plan industry when it comes to understanding and applying Behavioral Finance, Troy is a rare hybrid of practitioner, motivational speaker and people expert. His research is in Behavioral Psychology and Behavioral Economics which is really just a fancy way of saying he’s intrigued with understanding how and why people handle money the way they do. And his passion is in serving others, meaning his real love is in turning those Behavioral Challenges into Behavioral Solutions to help people be smarter with their money. 

Experience

Troy’s experience includes speaking at several state conventions for SHRM (Society for Human Resource Management); a speaking tour with the U.S. Department of Labor; speaking for the Employee Benefits Institute; speaking for the Retirement Advisor Council; speaking for CUPA-HR (Colleges and Universities Professional Association for Human Resources); and addressing various industry groups such as CFOs, CEOs, or accountants. Troy has also delivered a number of seminars and conferences for various church groups.

Speaking Topics

Troy speaks on a variety of topics related to money and finances and employees and employee benefits.

– “Financial Wellness – getting control of the money that’s controlling us”

– “How to Build a Benefits Program that Works”

– “Making the Workplace Work again”

– “How do we turn our offices into communities?”

– “The ROI of Retirement Readiness – How Helping your employees retire on time can save the company money”

– “What monkeys and chocolate can teach us about money”

– “Retirement Plans made simple”

– “Retirement Planning for Dummies”

– “The Total Money Makeover” (Dave Ramsey’s workshop material)

– “Getting control of your debt before it gets control of you”

– “Update from Washington – Legislation and Litigation impacting the 401k”

– “How to Survive a DOL Audit”

– “How to Retire Healthy and Wealthy”

– “Evaluating the Exchange – Equipping your Business for Change”

– “What Exchanges are made with our Retirement Plan Defaults?”

– “Pulling Back the Curtain on how Retirement Plans really work”

– “How Retirement Plans Survive the Increased Fiduciary Liability”

Not the typical corporate employer?

PHD. Consulting also specializes in helping associations and chambers of commerce with the design and implementation of their Association Retirement Plan as well as serving the needs of 403(b) retirement plans for colleges, even non-ERISA 403(b) retirement plans

Get In Touch

(844) PHD-401k

Location

7500 College Blvd., Suite 500,
Overland Park, Kansas 66210.

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