Find the Right Retirement Plan for Your Client | American Funds

How-To Guides

Identify the Retirement Plan Solution That Meets Your Clients’ Needs

Understand the needs and preferences of potential retirement plan sponsors to find a plan that’s right for them. Follow these steps to gather the information you need to deliver the best retirement solution.

Step
1

Gather the information

How to do it:
  • Prior to meeting, put together a list of key questions to ask such as:
    • How many employees do you have?
    • What are the assets in the plan?
    • How much is being contributed to the plan every year (employer and employee)?
    • If you have an existing plan, who is the provider?
    • What’s working/not working with the plan?
  • During the meeting, document the responses to your questions. Let prospects know that you will use the information to create a customized proposal.
  • Close the meeting by:
    • Thanking prospective clients for their time
    • Letting them know that you will follow up within two weeks to present your proposal
Step
2

Choose a plan and recordkeeping solution

How to do it:
  • Use the Small-Business Plan Selector Tool to determine the type of plan that is most appropriate for the business you’re working with.

    Options include:
    • 401(k) plans are open to all types of businesses and offer the most flexibility (in terms of contributions, loans and vesting, for example).
    • Solo 401(k) plans offer many of the advantages of a regular 401(k) for a company that does not have employees.
    • 403(b) plans are available to certain nonprofit organizations (for example, public schools and churches).
    • Money purchase and profit-sharing plans allow employer contributions only.
    • SIMPLE IRAs and SEP plans may be best for smaller businesses (those with fewer than 100 employees) that require an easy-to-use plan.
    • Payroll deduction IRAs allow employee contributions only.
  • If you have selected a 401(k), 403(b), money purchase or profit-sharing plan, choose one of the following recordkeeping solutions:
    • RecordkeeperDirect®  Designed especially for smaller plans and simple to operate and maintain, RecordkeeperDirect offers low-cost recordkeeping, a full complement of the American Funds, and customized plan administration by a third-party administrator.
    • PlanPremier®-TPA — Designed especially for larger plans, PlanPremier-TPA offers robust, yet low-cost plan services; over 1,000 mutual funds from more than 40 investment managers,* including American Funds; and customized plan administration by a TPA.
    • PlanPremier®-Bundled — Designed especially for larger plans, PlanPremier-Bundled offers robust, yet low-cost plan services; over 1,000 mutual funds from more than 40 investment managers,* including American Funds; and plan administration by American Funds.

* As of 12/31/2017. Available investment options will vary by retirement plan solution and share class.

Resources to use:

Comparing Retirement Plans (Brochure) — Explain plan features, learn contribution limits and obtain a glossary of terms.

Compare Recordkeeping Solutions — Determine which solution best meets the needs of the plan.

Compare SEP and SIMPLE Plans — Demonstrate key features and differences between SEP plans and SIMPLE IRAs.

Step
3

Choose a share class

How to do it:
  • Determine which of our share classes best meet the plan’s service needs. Each offers different fees and expenses and advisor compensation.
  • Review the costs associated with the retirement plan share class and recordkeeping solution you’re recommending and create a report using our Retirement Plan Cost Comparison Tool.

Resources to use:

Share Class Pricing & Details — Compare the expense ratios and advisor compensation for each share class.
Price-It Tool℠ — Get a preliminary estimate of the total cost associated with PlanPremier and RecordkeeperDirect plans.

Step
4

Order a proposal and build a fund lineup

How to do it:
  • Follow the steps on our Retirement Plan Proposal page. Use the proposal to communicate plan benefits to the plan sponsor. The electronic proposal (PDF) is easy to view, print and share with sponsors.
  • Create and monitor fund lineups as part of a prudent process to help plan sponsors select and monitor investments and to determine that they’re reasonably designed to meet ERISA requirements.

Resources to use:

Retirement Plan Proposal — Close the sale with a proposal specifically tailored to your client’s needs.


Investments are not FDIC-insured, nor are they deposits of or guaranteed by a bank or any other entity, so they may lose value.

Investors should carefully consider investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses. This and other important information is contained in the fund prospectuses and summary prospectuses, which can be obtained from a financial professional and should be read carefully before investing. 

Content contained herein is not intended to serve as impartial investment or fiduciary advice. The content has been developed by Capital Group, which receives fees for managing, distributing and/or servicing its investments.