Fiduciary Governance has been in all the headlines over the last year or two. There has been a lot of ERISA litigations. The fact is that Fiduciary Governance has always been in vogue, has always been important, not just recently. I am going to talk about eight things that you can put in place immediately to help you with respect to providing better governance.
- Form a Plan Committee – It shows that there are people looking over this very important employee benefit.
- Committee Meetings – The Committee should meet regularly, things change in the administration field, in the investment field and by meeting regularly, you are staying on top of it.
- Create an Investment Policy Statement (IPS) – Investment Policy Statement shows clearly that there is a thoughtful, deliberative process over the investments that you offer.
- Regularly Monitor & Vett Investments – You want to monitor your investments on a quarterly basis. Again, markets change and by monitoring quarterly you staying on top of those changes.
- Employee Education – Communicate to participants the investment menu. Participants have a real thirst to know what their fund offerings are. This helps them and by doing so, you are mitigating risks that you have as a Plan Sponsor.
- Benchmark Fees – Of critical importance to know that the service providers you are paying are charging reasonable fees.
- Memorialize Meeting Notes – If you do not document the meeting, the meeting did not take place. You want to make sure that you take notes of what happened at the meeting.
- Fiduciary Training – Your standard of care as a Plan Sponsor is that of an expert. It is critically important to know what your duties are and what your roles and responsibilities are.
There you have it. Eight tips that you can use immediately. If you are doing this already, that is great. If you are doing other things that work, would love to hear from you.
Alan Pfeffer, QPA, AIF®
Senior Vice President
Sentinel Benefits Group
Financial planning and investment advice are offered through Sentinel Pension Advisors, Inc., an SEC registered investment advisor. Insurance products offered through Sentinel Insurance Agency, Inc. Investment brokerage services offered through Sentinel Securities, Inc. Member FINRA & SIPC. Sentinel Benefits & Financial Group is the brand name for the Sentinel family of companies which includes Sentinel Benefits Group, LLC., Sentinel Pension Advisors, Inc., Sentinel Insurance Agency, Inc., and Sentinel Securities, Inc.