The Most Successful Plan Providers Take Time to Educate Sponsors

September 7, 2010 ( - According to a new survey by Anova Consulting Group, new small-market 401(k) plan sponsors (those that have worked as a sponsor for less than one year) who have been trained by their plan providers are more than twice as satisfied with their providers as those who did not receive adequate training.

Of the plan sponsor survey respondents, those who are comfortable with the level of training they received from their plan provider reported a 108% increase in their overall client satisfaction rating, at 79%, compared with a 38% overall satisfaction reported by sponsors that did not receive training from their 401k providers.  According to a press release, the survey also shows that of those plan sponsors who were comfortable with their training, 81% would strongly recommend their provider to other organizations, versus 38% of those who were not comfortable with the training they received.  

In addition, 78% of sponsors comfortable with the training they received reported their provider “treats me as an important client,” compared to only 39% of those not comfortable with their training. Seventy-six percent of sponsors comfortable with their training said their provider “provides good value for the money,” versus 44% of those not comfortable with their training.  

New plan sponsors who received adequate training also are more satisfied than those who did not with plan sponsor services (80% vs. 41%), investment services (75% vs. 47%), employee education services (69% vs. 33%), and participant services (77% vs. 43%).  

The survey represents responses over the past year of 875 401(k) plan sponsors with less than $10 million in plan assets under administration.