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Retirement Planning > Retirement Investing

Survey: Workers Want Automated Retirement Plans

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Many employees would just as soon let someone else manage their retirement savings.

Researchers in the retirement services unit at Prudential Financial Inc., Newark, N.J., have published figures supporting that conclusion in a summary of results from a recent worker survey.

In the 1970s and 1980s, many employees complained about lack of control over retirement plans. Employers responded by setting up 401(k) plans that let employees set their own savings rate and allocate their own assets.

But now, the majority of older workers and younger workers appear to prefer to let someone else handle most of the retirement plan work, the Prudential researchers report.

Members of the survey team told survey participants about several different automatic plan features, including automatic enrollment, a minimum initial contribution rate, an automatic contribution escalation program, automatic asset allocation, and automatic annuitization once plan members begin collecting retirement benefits.

About 57% of workers ages 21 to 30 and about 70% of workers ages 55 to 64 said they prefer the idea of automatic plans to “do it yourself” plans, and 76% of the older workers said they would recommend the automatic plans to younger workers, the Prudential researchers report.


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