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Defined Contribution

Work remains to get word out on employer match

Despite the improvements in defined contribution plan design and participant education, some research shows there's still a lot of work to do regarding the employer match.

In a nationwide survey published earlier this month, 23% of workers said they didn't know their employer's match formula, while 56% knew the formula and met or exceeded the match, found the Empower Institute, the affiliated research arm of Empower Retirement, Greenwood Village, Colo.

Another 21% said they knew the formula but didn't meet the match or didn't use the match as a guide to determining their contributions. The survey contained responses from 4,038 working adults, ages 18 to 65, who were enrolled in workplace retirement plans.

The 56% figure "is a positive message about what the employer match can mean," said Steve Jenks, chief marketing officer of Empower Retirement, whose firm has prepared multiple match campaigns for clients ranging from targeted emails to videos to web-based content. "Our challenge is to chip away at that 23%."