Participation in employer-sponsored defined contribution plans could rise dramatically if workers were to receive a matching employer contribution of up to 5% of their pay, according to the latest retirement confidence survey released today by the Washington-based Employee Benefit Research Institute and Matthew Greenwald & Associates. Nearly three-fourths of the 1,253 persons surveyed said an employer match would make them "much more" likely or "somewhat likely" to participate in a retirement plan at work. Other factors that could increase participation are lifestyle investment options that move participants' money into more conservative asset classes as they approach retirement (66%); and a provision that automatically increases workers' contributions by a fixed amount or percentage of pay when they receive a pay raise. Fifty-one percent of workers who do not participate in their employers' DC plans said they would if they received a matching contribution of up to 3% of pay.
And while most workers surveyed said they were behind schedule in saving for retirement, two-thirds said they believe they will reach their goal by the time they quit working, even if they have only guessed at the amount of money they will need.