Posts Tagged ‘TSC’

How Can I Get Employees to Save for Retirement?

Wednesday, May 30th, 2012

401K Retirement Savingsby Jennifer Arntson
Tax Sheltered Compensation, Inc.

The most fulfilling part of my job as a Client Relations Manager at TSC is meeting with our clients and their advisors to review their company’s retirement plan.  Lucky for me, 50% of my time is spent doing just that.  In these meetings, I hear many of the same questions and concerns from business owners.  One of the most common questions that I hear is: “How do I get my employees to participate in the plan and appreciate the value of this benefit I am providing?”  This is where automatic enrollment in conjunction with a good education plan can really make a difference.

When the topic of auto enrollment is discussed, there are certain questions that inevitably come up. Does it work?  What if an employee wants to opt out?  Will my employees get upset with me for defaulting them into the plan?  Will I have to play “baby-sitter” with my employees’ retirement savings?  Based on my experience implementing auto enrollment for our clients, here are my answers to these questions:

Does it work?  Yes, it does, and not only for large companies (a common misconception).  Employees that don’t opt into the plan usually don’t opt out – all due to inertia.  This employee behavior has shown to be consistent regardless of the size of the company they are employed by.

What if an employee wants to opt out?  They can do so at any time by completing an enrollment or contribution change form.  In addition, many employers choose to allow an employee to remove the contribution made within the first 90 days of the automatic enrollment.

Will my employees get upset with me for defaulting them into the plan?  While the answer is generally no, I did have a client share an experience with me that I found very interesting.  An employee was defaulted into the plan at a rate of 3%.  The employee was going to opt out of the plan and ask for a refund of the first contribution made; however, upon reviewing the amount deducted and placed into the plan, she decided the amount did not have a significant impact on her take home pay.  Furthermore, she realized that if it weren’t automatically deducted she would never have made the election to contribute for herself and decided to continue to defer into the plan.

Will I have to play “baby-sitter” with my employees’ retirement savings?  You do not need to play baby-sitter if you adopt the auto enrollment provision.  You will need to make sure employees are aware of the provision and distribute the appropriate employee notice and enrollment forms.  From then on it works just as if they had made a positive election into the plan.

You may have asked yourself many of the same questions as above.  Based on what you have read, could your 401(k) plan benefit from auto enrollment?

TSC is a Certified Payroll Control Systems partner.  For more information, visit the TSC Website by clicking here.

Legal Disclaimer: This article is intended for informational purposes only and by no means should replace or substitute other legal documents (governmental or non-governmental) reflecting similar content or advice. If you have any questions concerning your situation or the information provided, please consult with an attorney, CPA or HR Professional.

A Professionally Bundled Collaboration Brings Out the Best

Sunday, October 30th, 2011

TSC-PCS CollaborationSome of the most successful companies are those who do not venture beyond their core competency, but instead search for experts to handle specialized services that create a powerful collaboration. After all, just because a company offers a service, it does not necessarily mean they specialize in that particular area.

Tax Sheltered Compensation, Inc. (TSC) and Payroll Control Systems (PCS) have recently partnered to offer professionally bundled services to clients. TSC’s third-party administration of successful retirement plans and PCS’s quality payroll service provide more secure and simplified options for clients. The partnership means competency within compliance for both companies, and it is a win-win situation for their clients as well.

“There is a great value in partnering and not using false claims to say you can do it all,” said Gary Zurek, president of TSC.

The partnership is about convenience combined with trust. Together, the expertise and quality control of each company allows clients to have solid confidence in the services provided. More importantly, clients have confidence in the people who are providing the specialized services.

There are several advantages for employers to do business with a third-party administration firm that has integrated payroll services:

  • Simplifies tasks for the administrative personnel
  • Increases accuracy
  • Lowers the chances for error
  • Quickens turn around

This strategic collaboration strengthens both TSC and PCS by allowing them to offer clients complete, specialized services while staying within their own areas of expertise.

The right collaboration is a wonderful thing – especially when the result is effectively servicing clients.

Posted By:

Bob Willbanks
VP of Sales & Marketing
Payroll Control Systems
763.746.1934 Direct
bwillbanks@pcspayroll.com Email

Legal Disclaimer: This article is intended for informational purposes only and by no means should replace or substitute other legal documents (governmental or non-governmental) reflecting similar content or advice. If you have any questions concerning your situation or the information provided, please consult with an attorney, CPA or HR Professional.

PCS Partners

Tuesday, August 30th, 2011

Integrated PartnersWe at PCS are proud to offer a wide array of timekeeping, payroll and HRIS solutions to our customers… but we realize we can’t be all things to all people.  In order to maintain our high service standards, our focus must remain on our core competencies, which is why we have chosen to partner with other local service providers.

This strategy allows us to provide you with best in class solutions, from local vendors who do business next door.  They care about their reputation and have met our standards for quality service and integrity.  We hope you take the time to review our partners each time you have a business services need.  By doing business with PCS Partners, you can feel comfortable you’ll receive the same quality service commitment you get from us.  Plus, wherever possible, we’ve built integrations with our partners to deliver efficient data transfer and reporting.

Featured Partners

TSC
Tax Sheltered Compensation is one of Minnesota’s leading 401k administrators. They help convert your retirement plan from being an ordinary operating expense to an extraordinary management tool.  TSC believes that the key components of a successful corporate retirement plan are:

  • Customized and cost effective
  • Minimal plan management and administration
  • Worry-free compliance
  • Adequacy of retirement benefits
  • Exceptional service by an experienced team

Experience the TSC difference by contacting them today, visit their website by clicking here.

Global Cash Card
PCS has entered into an agreement with Global Cash Card to provide PayCards for our Clients and their employees.  If you are considering going paperless, have unbanked employees or are looking for alternatives to promote electronic payment, you should take a look at this pay option for your employees.

It is proven that PayCards save money and time on the distribution of employee payroll and provides an additional NO COST employee benefit.  Yes, no cost to you the employer, AND the employee can easily enjoy NO COST usage of the card by following simple rules that are outlined in their activation kit.  Find out more by clicking here.

Better Business Solutions
Reduce credit card processing fees by joining the BBS Buying Group where they utilize a two step process that can help your organization keep a lot more of your money in regards to credit card fees. Step 1 is helping your organization initially eliminate layers of profit being made by your current credit card company and step 2 is using the BBS Buying Group Advertising Program to continue to reduce the costs of accepting credit cards. Many of our members continue to save thousands annually by telling others about the BBS Buying Group.

Visit their website today and let them know PCS sent you!

Safe Shield
Keep your corporate status intact and gain anytime/anywhere access to all of your corporate papers and important information by utilizing Safe Shield’s services.

Safe Shield monitors ever changing corporate compliance regulations, completes required annual filings with the Minnesota Secretary of State, conducts regular reviews of all business activities, documents the review, and manages your Business Record Book through its proprietary online record book application.

TaxBreak
TaxBreak helps businesses owners and human resource executives implement an easy-to-manage system for taking advantage of employer tax credits designed to offset labor costs.  One form when hiring your employees does it all.  Contingency based so you pay nothing unless they find you Tax Credits!

These are just a few of the many partner relationships we have developed in order to serve you better.  Visit the partner section of our website to see our complete listing of Agreed Partners, Recommended Vendors and others today!

If you are interested in becoming a PCS Partner, please contact John De Leeuw, jdeleeuw@pcspayroll.com, 763.746.1938 Direct.

Deadline Set for New 401K Disclosure Rules

Sunday, July 31st, 2011

401k DisclosureBy: Juhl Stoesz, Associate Counsel, TSC

On July 15th, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced that final deadlines had been set for compliance with the new disclosure rules under ERISA §§408(b)(2) (service provider disclosure) and 404(a)(5) (disclosure to participants). According to the announcement, the effective dates for these two disclosure rules will now be more closely aligned. The service provider disclosure rules are now scheduled to go into effect on April 1, 2012 with the disclosures for participants becoming effective either May 31, 2012, or 60 days after the first day of the plan year beginning on or after November 1, 2011 (whichever is later).

The DOL’s New Disclosure Initiatives
As 401(k) plans increasingly become the primary source of retirement income for American workers, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (hereinafter referred to as the “DOL”), the agency charged with regulating private retirement plans, has turned its focus towards creating more transparency and consistency around the operation and arrangements of private retirement plans.  The DOL believes that to better-prepare workers for retirement, plan participants, sponsors, and the DOL itself need to receive and evaluate more specific information regarding plan arrangements.  To that end, the DOL has recently launched three distinct disclosure initiatives.  In doing so, the DOL has relied on its authority to implement standards and requirements for plan fiduciaries along with its ability to issue regulations and exemptions under ERISA’s prohibited transaction rules – namely that arrangements and fees must be reasonable.  While TSC is focused on this issue and is committed to helping you comply with the new requirements, it is important that you, as the sponsor of a private retirement plan, be aware of the coming changes.

  1. Service Provider Disclosure – to employers (408(b)(2)): On July 16, 2010, the DOL published an interim final regulation under ERISA §408(b)(2) that requires most service providers for retirement plans to disclose to plan fiduciaries comprehensive information about their arrangements with the plan including information regarding fees and possible conflicts of interest.  This regulation, which is now scheduled to go into effect beginning on April 1, 2012, would require that service providers describe in writing (1) the services that they intend to provide to the plan, (2) whether the service provider intends to assume a fiduciary role with respect to the plan, and (3) the costs and fees associated with the provision of services.  The DOL intends that plan sponsors use this information to evaluate the reasonableness of the arrangement and the fees paid to the service provider.  You should expect to receive these disclosures from service providers by early 2012.  Once you receive these disclosures, you should use them as a tool to evaluate the various service providers for your plan.
  2. Participant Disclosure – from the employer to participants (404(a) participant disclosures): On October 20, 2010, the DOL published in final form a participant fee disclosure regulation under ERISA §404, requiring that employers sponsoring retirement plans provide disclosures containing information regarding plan and investment costs to participants who direct their own investments. This regulation will be effective either May 31, 2012, or 60 days after the first day of the plan year beginning on or after November 1, 2011 (whichever is later).  The regulation requires two types of disclosure to participants (1) plan-related information and (2) investment-related information.

Plan-Related Information
Plan-related information must include general investment information, a description of administrative expenses, and a description of individual expenses.  The general plan information and expense descriptions must be provided to participants before they can initially direct their accounts and annually thereafter.  Information regarding actual fees and expenses paid from the participants’ accounts must be provided quarterly.

Investment-Related Information
Investment-related information must be provided to participants before they can initially direct their accounts and annually thereafter and must be provided in a chart format.  The information contained in this disclosure must include the name and type of each investment alternatives under the plan, its historical performance data, fund benchmark information, and a description of the fees associated with the investment.

In most cases, your investment platform provider will provide you with the information and/or disclosures needed to comply with this requirement.  TSC is also preparing to assist its clients in meeting this new participant disclosure requirement.

Government Reporting Disclosure – from employers to the DOL (Form 5500 Schedule C reporting)
On November 16, 2007, the DOL published a final regulation providing new requirements for reporting service providers and their fees to the DOL by listing them on the Schedule C of the Form 5500.  This information was required to be reported by large plans beginning in 2009.  Importantly, only large plans, generally those with over 100 participants at the beginning of the plan year, must comply with this reporting requirement.  The regulation also requires that service providers who received $5,000 in fees during the year report to large plan sponsors the amount of direct, indirect, and bundled compensation that they received.  The plan sponsor must then list the name of the service provider and its fees on Schedule C to the Form 5500.  TSC has been assisting its clients meet this disclosure requirement since it was first required in 2009 and will continue to provide this assistance.

This article is only intended to give you a brief overview of three new and complex requirements and does not attempt to explain the details of each requirement.  It is our hope that this article will familiarize you with the changing regulatory landscape so that the impending changes will not come as a surprise.  Again, TSC is well-versed in the new regulations and is committed to helping you maintain compliance.  If you have any questions regarding any of these new regulations, please contact your TSC Retirement Plan Administrator.

-    Juhl Stoesz, Associate Counsel, TSC

Need more information?  Contact:

Matt Slyter, QKA
Vice President, Operations
TSC
direct: 952.806.4329
matts@tsc401k.com
www.tsc401k.com

Legal Disclaimer: This article is intended for informational purposes only and by no means should replace or substitute other legal documents (governmental or non-governmental) reflecting similar content or advice. If you have any questions concerning your situation or the information provided, please consult with an attorney, CPA or HR Professional.

Are You Retirement Ready?

Tuesday, April 26th, 2011

Are You Ready For Retirement

By: Gary Zurek

Do you know how much money is needed for your retirement? Do your participants know how much they need? Retirement readiness…what does that mean?

There are many Baby Boomers turning 65 this year who now know they don’t have enough money for retirement.  This year (2011) is the beginning of the Baby Boomer generation turning 65. Over the next 20 years, 78 million Americans will turn 65. Sixty-five has, in the past, been synonymous with retirement. However, a recent article in the Wall Street Journal entitled “Retiring Boomers Find 401k Plans Fall Short” talks about the lack of retirement preparedness. According to the article the typical pre-retirement baby boomer has less than 25% of what he/she needs in a 401k plan to retire.

Why are they so woefully unprepared for retirement? There are many reasons for this problem including procrastination, boomer imprudence, participant loans, apathy, too little investment advice and too little being saved. I believe the number one reason is the fact that too little money is being saved for retirement.  Unfortunately, many boomers will either need to work longer than they anticipated or scale back their lifestyle to conserve their retirement funds.

While the boomer generation, particularly those over 55, may not be in a position to change their retirement readiness, there is still time for younger boomers, Gen Xer’s and Gen Yer’s to achieve an adequate retirement benefit. How? It’s called Retirement Planning.

I am constantly reading about all of the participant features that produce a great 401k plan: online annual contribution increase, take-home pay calculator, custom date portfolio returns and more. All of these items are wonderful features and tools but none of them provides the one thing that every participant needs to know: How much money do I need in my 401k account to achieve a meaningful retirement benefit. Once a participant knows how much money he/she needs in their account they can then, with the help of their investment adviser, establish a plan on how to get there. You notice I said “a plan”. For all of the talk about features and educating the participants on how to invest we miss the most important piece – planning. You may have heard this before but we, as Americans, spend more time planning our vacations than we do our retirement readiness.

As a reminder, TSC’s 401k Health Check™ provides the piece of information that participants are often missing to enable them to plan. It tells the participant if they are on track to save and achieve a meaningful retirement benefit. In addition to the Health Check, our website has a retirement benefit calculator which allows participants to customize their benefit package based on investments held outside their 401k account. Go to www.tsc401k.com, with your Health Check and see how you measure up for your retirement.

The only way to have a meaningful retirement benefit is to plan for it. At TSC, we make corporate retirement plans easy… Ask your participants the simple question: do you know what you’ll need to be retirement ready? Help your participants plan today for retirement before they are “sixty-five”.

Contributed By:

Gary Zurek
President
TSC
952.806.4343 Direct
garyz@tsc401k.com

Legal Disclaimer: This article is intended for informational purposes only and by no means should replace or substitute other legal documents (governmental or non-governmental) reflecting similar content or advice. If you have any questions concerning your situation or the information provided, please consult with an attorney, CPA or HR Professional.