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October 27, 2020

A Retirement Plan that Empowers Your Employees, Your Organization, and Your Mission

By David Quello

Like all components of whole person wellness, finances play a vital role.

We know that one of the best ways to improve financial well-being is through an employer-sponsored retirement plan. However, the benefits of a workplace retirement plan go far beyond individual well-being.

As my colleague Josh Smith wrote in a recent blog, at Portico we believe in doing well, while doing good. Portico’s retirement plan can help you do just that. Our plan encourages financial well-being in your employees, which in turn helps you build a stronger organization and make a more positive impact in the world.

Financial Wellness Benefits Both Employee and Employer

Financial well-being is an integral component of overall health, at both the individual and organizational level.

Your employees’ financial wellness has a direct impact on your organization. Those experiencing financial insecurity may feel less able to be fully present at work. According to a recent Netspend study, “Financially insecure employees are more likely to have lower workplace performance, engagement, satisfaction, and retention.” 1

The struggle for many non-profit, church, and other mission-driven organizations is that while you want to encourage employees to engage in their own financial well-being, finding a meaningful way to do so on a limited budget presents a real challenge.

How Can Organizations Improve Employees’ Financial Health?

Offering a workplace retirement plan is a great way to help employees set a solid course for better long-term financial health. According to a MetLife survey, employees are more likely to have poor financial health if they do not have access to an employer-sponsored retirement plan.2

Not only does access to an employer-sponsored retirement plan play a key role in employee financial and overall well-being, this benefit is also highly valued by employees of all generations, with approximately 70% of baby boomers, Generation Xers, and millennials describing it as a “must-have” benefit.1

Portico’s Target Date Funds Help You Do Well, While Doing Good

At Portico, our retirement plan includes an option for target date funds, in addition to build-your-own  funds.  While most large employers offer target date funds as a default investment option, we take this offering further by customizing it for our members.

Target date funds

Target date funds are designed to help you invest appropriately over your lifetime, based on your risk tolerance as you age. The funds are managed by investment professionals who systematically adjust the mix of stocks and bonds over time to suit your changing investment risk needs.

Working with a leading target date fund consultant, we developed funds and glide paths that create an appropriate mix of equities, bonds, and real assets to help our members meet their financial goals. Our funds also include private equity – a unique feature in defined contribution plans and a category that has historically delivered strong returns.

While target date funds are commonplace for large employers, Portico’s offering is different. In addition to providing an option for unscreened target date funds, we also have eleven social purpose target date funds. That means employees are able to invest in funds that align with their beliefs and social priorities, without sacrificing significant financial return.

Portico’s social purpose funds are aligned with ELCA social teachings and policies and are invested in companies demonstrating measurable positive social impact. These funds also screen out companies whose business practices conflict with ELCA social criteria screens addressing alcohol, environmental harm, gambling, military weapons, pornography, private prisons, tobacco, and denial of human rights.

Market research shows a strong interest among employees in socially responsible investing as Portico President Rev. Jeff Thiemann shared in his recent blog, but very few companies actually offer socially screened retirement options. Portico plan members, however, have had the option to invest in social purpose funds since 1988.

So You Can Foster Financial Well-Being

Offering a defined contribution retirement plan, such as one with target date funds and a social investment option, can help you build a stronger organization – and that’s doing well. More importantly, offering this type of plan shows that you care for your employees’ financial well-being as well as the impact they have on this world – and that’s doing good.  Together, we can enhance the total well-being of your employees, your organization, and this world.

1. The Impact of Employee Financial Health on Business and the Economy, Netspend, 2020
2. MetLife’s 18th Annual U.S. Employee Benefit Trends Study 2020

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David Quello

With deep familial roots in the ELCA, David brings to Portico a commitment to helping our members achieve life-long financial well-being. He believes in using his financial expertise to help others be more financially whole so they may be well and ready to serve others. As chief investment officer, David leads Portico’s in-house investment team, collaborating with internal partners to ensure we listen and deliver the products and services our members need to better serve their missions.

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