July 22, 2013 (PLANSPONSOR.com) – An analysis of pre-retirement planning programs offered by five large employers showed they improved financial and pension literacy and changed employees’ reported retirement plans.
A survey conducted immediately after attending a seminar, indicated participants had a very positive experience and believed the seminars are helpful, according to a working paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) about the study. Ninety-five percent of respondents stated the programs provided all or most of the information needed for them to make important retirement decisions.
Eighty-six percent of respondents rated the programs very good or excellent, and 93% found the presenters and program leaders to be very good or excellent. Eighty-seven percent of respondents reported believing they will be able to make better retirement choices after participating in the seminar.
Seventy-two percent of individuals reported the programs raised their awareness of the benefits provided by their employers. Accordingly, participants gave high marks to the quality of the programs, believing that the programs provide the information they needed, and gave their employers credit for offering these programs.
According to the researchers, "Based on our assessment of these initial data, employer-provided financial education programs can increase employee knowledge of retirement programs and assist them in making better retirement choices. This enables their employees to achieve a more desirable retirement. Also, to the extent that the firm has designed its pension plan to optimize employee retention and the age structure of its workforce, the seminars enhance the probability that these corporate goals will be achieved."
More information about "Golden Years or Financial Fears? Decision Making After Retirement Seminars," including how to obtain a copy, is here.