Pension and Retirement
• Services for a Group RRSP
We offer all the required consulting services for defined contribution and defined benefit registered pension plans, deferred profit sharing plans, registered retirement savings plans, and other savings plans.
We classify our services into five main areas:
1. Plan design
2. Review of provider services
3. Assistance in meeting employer fiduciary responsibilities
4. Employee communication
5. Problem resolution
We assist employers in meeting their fiduciary responsibilities in three main areas:
Review and discussion of the required Statement of Investment Policy and Procedures for registered pension plans. This document confirms the decisions made by the employer in respect of the plan’s investments and formalizes certain practices regarding the selection of investment options and review of their appropriateness.
Provision of relative investment performance information.
Member investment education and communication. Most individuals learn very little about investments during their years of formal education, however many employees are then asked to make decisions about how to invest monies that will contribute significantly to their retirement income. In order for the employer to meet their fiduciary responsibility, members must be given access to tools that they can use to gain knowledge about investments and use the options available in the pension plan in ways that meet their personal objectives.
We provide extensive employee communication services, “translating” technical retirement/investment jargon into words easily understandable by employees. Part of this process will be working with the supplier of the investment options to develop the appropriate communication package at implementation and on an ongoing basis. While investment managers are expert at communicating the technical aspects of their funds, the needs of employees often lie more in understanding investment basics. Only after these basics are understood will the important differences between investment options be clear.
Problems arise in the operation of any plan, of varying magnitude. Many are of an administrative nature that can be simply resolved through contact with the supplier of services, or through review of the plan with administrative staff. If the same type of problem is repeated frequently, or if a major problem arises, intervention at a higher level or through the consultant may be required. We are available to assist in problem resolution at any level, and encourage our clients to contact us for assistance when required.
Underwriters Alliance is committed to providing employers with the knowledge and advice in order to successfully develop and manage their employer sponsored employee retirement programs.
Our basic services are threefold:
1. To help employers design a plan that fits their needs;
2. To provide a supplier that best matches the needs of the plan; and
3. To keep the plan running effectively after it has been established.
WHY WORK WITH A RETIREMENT PLAN CONSULTANT?
Many employers do not have the in-house expertise to completely manage retirement and pension plans, particularly given the significantly increased emphasis on plan governance. Retaining a consultant who specializes in retirement plans can be a cost effective way to operate a plan which meets your objectives in the area of plan design and budget, and satisfy the varying levels of governance requirements.
WHAT SERVICES DOES UNDERWRITERS ALLIANCE PROVIDE?
There are five main areas where consulting assistance is normally provided:
1. Plan design – What kind of plan is desired given the objectives of the employer sponsoring the plan and the Canadian regulatory environment for retirement plans?
2. Development and implementation of a governance structure based on the plan design and demographics of employee group.
3. Selection of a provider of recordkeeping and investment services for the plan in accordance with criteria determined by the plan design and governance structure.
4. Design and implementation of an employee communication program for the plan.
5. Problem resolution as required.