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401(k) Fridays Podcast

The 401(k) Fridays Podcast features a weekly conversation with an expert guest to help employers and their service partners keep up with workplace retirement plan topics and trends. Listen today, improve your retirement plan tomorrow!
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Now displaying: September, 2016
Sep 30, 2016

Episode Description

You have likely had someone pitch or discuss with you the idea of introducing financial wellness to your employee population, or if you haven’t, the conversation is undoubtedly coming soon!  In this episode we tackle the not so simple questions of what is financial wellness, how do we know if someone is financially healthy and is Financial Wellness here to stay or is this another passing fad in the benefits arena.  To help explore the topic I have Doug Murray, EVP and Mary Hollingsworth, SVP and Director of Product Strategy at Wells Fargo Institutional Retirement. A few key points to listen for are who should be defining what financial wellness means, employers or their service providers, the motivations around introducing financial wellness to your workforce and how to set goals and measure outcomes for a financial wellness offering. An interesting point that we discuss and one to ponder, if you shift your focus to promoting more holistic financial wellness within your workforce, are you okay that the message some of your employees could get is that it doesn’t make sense for them to participate in your 401(k) plan right now?  Love to hear your feedback on that, send me an email at info@401kfridays.com. 

If you’re not subscribed to our email list already, go to www.401kfridays.com/subscribe, going forward we’ll be notifying our email subscribers of future podcast guests and you will have the exclusive opportunity to submit topics or questions for me to address with them on the show! 

Guest Bios

Doug Murray is part of the senior leadership team for Wells Fargo Institutional Retirement and Trust. In this role, he is actively involved in setting overall strategic direction for the group. As the national director of institutional sales, Doug leads distribution efforts across all products and market segments.

Doug has more than 30 years of experience in the financial services industry. He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, with majors in finance and risk/insurance. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation and is a member of the CFA Institute.

Doug is active in the retirement industry and in his community. He serves on the Board of Trustees for the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) and on the Board of Directors at Partnership Resources, Inc., a local nonprofit organization. Doug is also a member of Wells Fargo’s Minnesota Leadership Council. 

Doug lives in Minneapolis, MN with his wife Karen and teenage children Madison and Ian. His interests include traveling with his family, golf, and cooking.

Mary Hollingsworth is the director of Product Strategy and Positioning for Wells Fargo Institutional Retirement and Trust. In this role, Mary leads institutional product strategy for defined contribution, defined benefit, trust and custody, investments and digital strategies. She also is responsible for the overall positioning and communication of products and services to clients and the external market place.

Prior to her current role, Mary was director of Participant Solutions. She oversaw the participant experience including the call center, participant education and communication services, and asset retention. Mary joined Wells Fargo in 1999 with responsibility for the call center, client services, training and development, and quality.

Mary came to Wells Fargo from Fidelity Investments where she served as national director of quality for Retail Operations. Prior to Fidelity Investments, Mary worked at Arthur Andersen as quality officer for the Chicago office operations. Mary received her bachelor’s degree in accounting from Marquette University.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Helps employers navigate the evolving retirement benefits landscape through weekly engaging interviews with industry leaders, subject matter experts and progressive employers with unique viewpoints. The diverse in-depth perspectives and relevant topics help employers make more informed decisions about their retirement benefit programs which will positively impact their employees and business.  For more information please visit www.401kfridays.com/podcasts.

 

Sep 23, 2016

Episode Overview

Have you ever wondered why other employers and plan sponsors either stay with or make changes to their retirement service providers?  Has it been a little while since you have been out to the market to evaluate your retirement service partners and want to what your peers are looking for in record keepers and consultants?  If so, then my conversation with Josh Dietch, Managing Director at Chatham Partners should be helpful!  Who is Chatham Partners and how can they speak credibly about what employers are thinking?  In short, they are the go to firm the retirement industry uses to gather feedback on their services and analyze why they either were successful or not in a securing or retaining relationships with employers.  During my conversation with Josh, we hit on so many great topics such as the valued and commoditized offerings of retirement service providers, how the drive for low fees is forcing providers to ration service, the paradox of participant education and how the new DOL fiduciary rule might impact provider searches and evaluations in the future.  There is a little “inside baseball” talk in this episode, but I think you will find it enlightening and could help put some of the responses or strategies of your service providers in perspective. Last thing, I would really be interested to hear which points we covered had you nodding your head in agreement or shaking it in disagreement.  Shoot me an email at info@401kfridays.com with your thoughts. Now, here we go!

Guest Bio

Joshua Dietch joined Chatham Partners in 2005 and is a Managing Director. In this capacity, Joshua manages research and consulting engagements that focus on client retention and new business development processes. Prior to joining Chatham, Joshua was Director, Product Marketing and Management with ADP Retirement Services managing product development and marketing for ADP's defined contribution and executive deferred compensation products. Earlier in his career, Joshua was a consultant with Cerulli Associates, helping financial service firms with both business strategy and new product development, and previously worked for a subsidiary of the Principal Financial Group. He has been quoted on financial issues for leading publications such as the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Pensions and Investments, Investment News and several trade publications, and has also appeared on CNBC. Joshua received his B.A. in History from Bates College.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Helps employers navigate the evolving retirement benefits landscape through weekly engaging interviews with industry leaders, subject matter experts and progressive employers with unique viewpoints. The diverse in-depth perspectives and relevant topics help employers make more informed decisions about their retirement benefit programs which will positively impact their employees and business.  For more information please visit www.401kfridays.com/podcasts.

Sep 16, 2016

Episode Summary

If you have ever felt like there is more you can do with or learn from your 401(k) plan data, this is the episode for you!  To help explore the topic I am excited to have both John Fitzsimmons, Vice President of Reporting and Analytics and Bryan Hallock Director of Customer Analytics, both with Fidelity Workplace Investing.  Despite the focus on what some might consider a dry topic, we had a fast moving and informative conversation.  We tackled topics such as why its important for employers who are looking to gain insight from their plan data to get past the averages, how to turn conventional wisdom into quantifiable observations and how with proper analysis of your 401(k) data, you can gain insight that can positively impact your plan, your business and participant retirement outcomes.  I also learned a new term, elevator analysis.  Take a listen, and let me know if you start using it in conversations going forward!  Since I didn’t do such a great job of introducing my guests, the first new voice you will hear from is John and the second is Bryan.  Last thing, if you’re not subscribed to the email list already, go to www.401kfridays.com and subscribe, going forward we will be notifying our email subscribers of our future podcast guests and they will have the exclusive opportunity to submit topics or questions for me to address with them on the show!  Now, I hope you enjoy my conversation with John and Brian!

Guest Bios

John Fitzsimmons is vice president of Reporting and Analytics for Fidelity Investments, a diversified financial services firm that makes retirement planning accessible to 23 million customers – from people investing their life savings, to businesses managing their employee benefits, to advisors investing their clients’ money.  

 

As vice president of Reporting & and Analytics, John leads a team that is responsible for Fidelity’s Executive Insights platform. Leveraging Fidelity’s data base of 23 million customers, Executive Insights allows Plan Sponsors to dynamically analyze their participant’s retirement readiness and benchmark themselves against their peers.

 

Mr. Fitzsimmons joined Fidelity in 1995 and has held several leadership positions within Fidelity’s Workplace Investing business. Prior to his current role, he John worked in Finance roles across Fidelity. 

 

Mr. Fitzsimmons received his bachelor of arts degree in International Relations from Tufts University, and a Master of Business Administration degree from Boston University.  

Bryan Hallock is an Atlanta native, receiving his B.S. in Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology, and his M.B.A. in Finance from Georgia State University. He started with Fidelity in Boston in 2004 and now serves as a Director of Workplace Investing Finance - Customer Analytics. In this role, he explores 401(k) participant behavior with the care of a data scientist and a creativity and zeal inspired by “Moneyball”.  This approach has proved fruitful in understanding the underlying drivers of participant behavior and outcomes, creating actionable metrics that have been communicated to the marketplace, clients, prospects, and policy makers in Washington. Bryan recently received his J.D. (law) degree from Georgia State University and is a member of the State Bar of Georgia.

401(k) Fridays Podcast Overview

Helps employers navigate the evolving retirement benefits landscape through weekly engaging interviews with industry leaders, subject matter experts and progressive employers with unique viewpoints. The diverse in-depth perspectives and relevant topics help employers make more informed decisions about their retirement benefit programs which will positively impact their employees and business.  For more information please visit www.401kfridays.com/podcasts.

Sep 9, 2016

Episode Description

Just a preview of things to come, your 401(k), it doesn’t work outside the U.S.!  So, let’s go for a trip around the globe to discuss the topics, trends and concepts employers who have employees outside the US should be aware of.  With me I have Nick Dobbelbower, PhD, CEBS, DipIEB, GPHR, Vice President and Regional Practice Leader in Lockton’s Global Benefits Practice.  Whether you have newly acquired international employees or you have been deeply involved with global retirement benefits, or you are just curious what goes on in other countries, this is an incredibility valuable episode.  We touch on considerations for employers who are looking to harmonize retirement benefits levels on a global basis, things to know before making any changes to non-US retirement benefits programs and plenty of examples to help you along the way!  As a reminder, several episodes, including this one have either been pre-approved or submitted for HR recertification credits by SHRM or HRCI.  Click here to see the full list of episodes and simple steps to listen, learn and earn your recertification credits.  Now, I hope you enjoy my conversation with professor Nick!

Guest Bio

Nick is the Practice Leader for Intellectual Capital in Lockton’s Global Benefits Practice. He is responsible for developing and maintaining comprehensive global benefits resources, including compliance, statutory requirements, market practice, and benchmarking. He ensures that Lockton’s global consultants effectively leverage the firm’s data and information resources to address the needs of their multinational clients.

He manages a team of research consultants who work with Lockton global offices to develop statutory and market practice information on employee benefits provisions around the world. Nick also works directly with multinational clients to develop, implement, and support international employee benefits strategies, including local employee benefits, business travel and expatriate programs, regional plan consolidation, and multinational pooling and captives.

Nick brings to Lockton a well-rounded professional and academic background. His professional experience includes extensive international consulting and research work with multinational clients and establishing and managing affiliate relationships. He has presented at numerous professional conferences and contributed to leading industry publications on international benefits topics. His academic experience includes faculty positions and French and Francophone studies at Macalester College, Bucknell University, and Duke University.

Nick is fluent in French and proficient in Spanish and Italian. He also has experience in web and graphic design. In his down time, he participates in charity bicycle races and marathons. 

Professional Designations and Affiliations

  • ™  Diploma in International Employee Benefits (DipIEB)

  • ™  Certified Employee Benefits Specialist (CEBS)

  • ™  Global Professional in Human Resources (GPHR)

  • ™  Certificate in Global Benefits Management (IFEBP)

  • ™  Certificate in International Benefits (IBIS Academy)

  • ™  Life, Accident, and Health Insurance License

401(k) Fridays Podcast

Helps employers navigate the evolving retirement benefits landscape through weekly engaging interviews with industry leaders, subject matter experts and progressive employers with unique viewpoints. The diverse in-depth perspectives and relevant topics help employers make more informed decisions about their retirement benefit programs which will positively impact their employees and business.  For more information please visit www.401kfridays.com/podcasts.

Sep 1, 2016

Episode Description

Constructing an investment menu is something all 401(k) plans need to do.  And, like most things, to get a good outcome for your plan and participants, the devil is in the details!  To help you as a plan fiduciary I am excited to introduce our first three part mini-course of the podcast!  This episode is Part One where we discuss fundamentals and key building blocks of investment menu construction.  To help provide perspective I invited Matt Sommer, Vice President and Director of Defined Contribution Services at Janus Capital.  As a both a CFA and a CFP, Matt provides valuable and more importantly understandable insights on trends in investment menu design.  Our conversation ranges from fundamental concepts such as how many investments are plans offering, how investment menu design correlates to plan size and thoughts offering self-directed brokerage accounts.  Also, be sure to listen for some considerations for plan fiduciaries around investment risk based on where we sit in the second half of 2016 and in the midst of an equity bull market and declining interest rates. 

If you haven’t already, be sure to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes or your favorite podcast app to be notified when the next two episodes are released.  

Guest Bio

 

401(k) Fridays Podcast

Helps employers navigate the evolving retirement benefits landscape through weekly engaging interviews with industry leaders, subject matter experts and progressive employers with unique viewpoints. The diverse in-depth perspectives and relevant topics help employers make more informed decisions about their retirement benefit programs which will positively impact their employees and business.  For more information please visit www.401kfridays.com/podcasts.

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