When all else fails to get employees to ratchet up their retirement contributions, hit them with this number.
A 65-year-old couple that retires this year will need $240,000 just to cover their medical expenses, according to Fidelity Investment’s most recent retiree healthcare costs estimate.
The estimate applies to retirees with traditional Medicare coverage (without any retiree medical coverage) and doesn’t include any costs associated with nursing-home care.
That figure is 4% higher than the $230,000 Fidelity projected retirees would spend on health care last year, and Fidelity’s projections have increased by an average of 6% annually since it began the estimates in 2002.
Tactics to improve outcomes
Here are five things you can do right now to boost employees’ 401(k) contributions:
- Conduct a retirement readiness assessment. Find out how many employees in each demographic group represented at your company participate in your retirement plans. If you see pockets of low participation, tailor presentations and documents to speak directly to them.
- Remove participation barriers. If it doesn’t encourage participation, consider changing it. Examples: Shorten the period new hires have to wait to enroll. Eliminate the paperwork required to enroll.
- Educate by age. Tailor educational programs to each age group. Examples: Tell twentysomethings about the value of the company match, and educate them on their investment options. Then talk to near-retirees about how they can make their savings last throughout retirement.
- Rethink the company match. The name of the game is getting employees to save as much as possible. That may require switching your match from a 100% match on the first 2% of pay to a 25% match on the first 8% of pay. It’ll cost your company the same while encouraging employees to save more.
- Measure annually. After you make some changes, check your plan’s participation level after a year. If participation’s down, more tinkering will have to be done.