Help Clients Plan for Their Retirement Needs
The VisualCalc™ Retirement Planning Calculator is a web-based calculator that financial planning institutions, including banks, retirement plan administrators, financial planners, and investment advisors can offer their clients to help them properly prepare for their retirement. This customer self-service tool can be deployed on a financial institution’s website to help its clients assess their current retirement financial health, and understand what changes they can make to better align their current financial and investment strategy with their future retirement needs. A firm’s associates can also use it as an interactive sales tool to help establish and cultivate relationships with their clients and prospects.
Maximize Retirement Assets Under Management
Providing clients with a clear, concise snapshot of their current retirement health enables financial institutions to help these clients optimize their retirement investment strategy. This generally involves increasing the amount of their contributions, as well as reallocating their funds to an investment mix that best meets their retirement goals.
Data from general industry-wide use of retirement planning calculators, as well as specific results from existing VisualCalc customers, validate this benefit:
- One financial institution that has deployed the VisualCalc Retirement Planning Calculator has found that their clients who use the tool have grown their account balances 40% more than those who do not. These clients have increased their contributions to their plans, access their accounts 25% more often, and perform nearly twice as many transactions on their website.
- Another institution that deployed the VisualCalc Retirement Planning Calculator one year ago has found almost a 10% increase in the number of participants to its elective deferred compensation plan. In addition, participants have increased their contribution rates and replacement ratios.
- An independent study found that workers who have performed a retirement needs calculation are more than twice as likely than those who have not to expect they will need to accumulate at least $1 million before retiring.
- Another independent study revealed that 77% of retirement plan participants would increase their retirement savings if they knew how much they needed to save.
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Retirement Planning Requirements are Rapidly Evolving
Organizations, both public and private, are facing a new set of challenges as retirement planning behavior and requirements have evolved over the last decade. Unlike previous generations, who had set pensions and very little involvement in creating and managing their retirement plans, employees today are actively involved in managing their own retirement funding. Unfortunately, the general public lacks the financial knowledge necessary to navigate these waters on their own.
New Tool Addresses Growing Need for Client Self-Service
This new web-based tool helps address the growing requirement for financial institutions and retirement plan administrators to provide their plan participants with sufficient support, education and tools so that they can play an active role in managing their own retirement strategy and funds. While many organizations have instituted general retirement education and outreach programs, these may not be the most effective measures, since every client’s retirement planning needs are unique. Programs tailored to each client are ideal, but, in many cases, they are not a practical or affordable option. Web-based self-service tools can help bridge this gap, enabling the clients themselves to actively construct and manage a personalized retirement plan that is optimal for their needs.
Web-based Tool Compares Retirement Plan vs. Goals
The VisualCalc Retirement Planning Calculator is an interactive, graphical, web-based calculator that provides clients with a personalized, comprehensive snapshot of their current retirement strategy (including retirement plan balances for both qualified and non-qualified plans, investments, monthly savings targets, etc.), and then shows, in the form of easy-to-interpret charts and graphs, whether or not the client is on track to meet their retirement goals. Any deficiencies or gaps are clearly highlighted.
Interactive “What If” Analysis Helps Clients Analyze Potential Changes
The VisualCalc Retirement Planning Calculator also supports interactive, “what-if” analysis capabilities that enable clients to assess what changes are required to achieve their retirement objectives. Users can manipulate a set of easy-to-use inputs, such as buttons and sliders, to change a multitude of variables related to their financial strategy and retirement goals, including investment allocations, social security assumptions, projected pre- and post-retirement earnings, and expected retirement age. The impact of these changes, and their effect on the user’s retirement health, are immediately shown in clear, easy-to-understand tables, graphs and charts. This helps clients determine what changes are needed to best meet their retirement objectives.
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A Guided Selling Solution
The VisualCalc Retirement Planning Calculator can also be used for interactive collaboration by a financial institution’s associates and their clients, most likely via a web conferencing service, enabling them to jointly review the client’s current retirement strategy, and explore changes that would improve the client’s retirement health.
The VisualCalc Retirement Planning Calculator also helps financial institutions that offer or administer retirement plans monitor key metrics associated with these retirement plans, such as participation rate, overall contributions, and allocations across different retirement investment funds.
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A Comprehensive, Customizable, Integrated Platform
The VisualCalc Retirement Planning Calculator is built on a platform featuring an embedded calculation engine that supports state-of-the-art computational algorithms and simulation techniques, such as Monte Carlo methods. This advanced pre-configured calculation engine drives the results of the user’s analysis. On top of this analysis engine, the tool’s user interface can be easily customized to incorporate the financial institution’s branding and graphical standards, so that the calculator has a consistent “look and feel” with the institution’s website and other marketing properties and collateral.
Two Deployment Modes Available: Public Mode and Private Mode
The VisualCalc Retirement Planning Calculator can be deployed in two alternative modes: 1) a turn-key, non-authenticated mode (Public Mode), and 2) a fully integrated, authenticated mode (Private Mode).
The Public Mode version of the VisualCalc Retirement Planning Calculator can be quickly and easily deployed on a financial institution’s website in turn-key fashion, with a minimal set of changes required to adapt it to the institution’s graphic standards.
The Private Mode version of the VisualCalc Retirement Planning Calculator offers an additional level of customization and integration. The tool’s functionality can be customized to incorporate a given financial institution’s specific needs, including account types and names, defined benefit plans, interest rates, and business rules. The tool can also be can be integrated with the institution’s internal databases, so their client’s account information and the institution’s business rules can be automatically loaded into each user’s session. The calculator is also able to bring in external data, such as social security balances and account balances at other financial institutions, so that users are presented with the most complete, accurate and personalized picture of their current retirement plan. This holistic view of both internal and external resources also helps financial institutions work with their clients to optimize the overall allocation of their retirement fund balances, including the consolidation of multiple accounts into a single integrated account.
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