PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 32

managing relationships / plan management
Defining Roles
How to take the lead in adviser/recordkeeper relationships
A
t times, a plan adviser shares responsibilities for
servicing a client with the client's recordkeeper.
Managing Editor Judy Faust Hartnett checked in with
three advisers about the recordkeeper's role within their
advisory service model.
PLANADVISER: How does your client service model vary
from recordkeeper to recordkeeper? From client to client?
John Barry: We take a more active role in administration
and plan design when the plan is using a bundled recordkeeper.
We do have different service models depending
on the size of the plan and the revenue it generates. For
example, what we do for small companies vs. large companies
is unlimited Zoom seminars instead of in-person
meetings. We offer one in-person meeting annually for
small plans; however, if they ask for a second one we never
turn them down. For large-plan clients, we offer unlimited
in-person seminars.
Joe Connell: Like John, we have tried to make our service
model consistent across all of our clients, regardless of the
provider. But we do have relationships with recordkeepers
where the service levels are not as personalized [such as
working with a designated daily account manager], and
it's more of a group serving the plans in the smaller end
of the market. Here, we ensure that they work with our
team by including us in all client communications so we
can address any issues proactively for the client.
The only client-service-level differences occur when
in-person committee meetings are on a quarterly or semiannual
basis. We're required to be more active in education
and communications for a client when it has several hundred
or even thousands of employees, vs. a one-location client
with fewer than 50. But our communications program makes
all of our tools and resources available to each of them.
Vince Morris: Our client service model stays fairly consistent,
too, but can vary from recordkeeper to recordkeeper
based on what that provider's relationship management
team looks like, as well as the capabilities and services that
are available.
For instance, as Joe said, if the recordkeeper has more of
a relationship management team approach, and there's not a
dedicated relationship manager for the specific client, then
we may be more involved with that client because it doesn't
have a primary point of contact at the recordkeeper to go to.
On the flip side, other recordkeepers may have a dedicated
relationship manager whom the client knows. This makes it a
bit easier for the plan sponsor client to delineate roles.
For our clients, the agreements and the services we
provide can create the greatest impact. Our services depend
on whether we're acting as a 3(21) fiduciary or a 3(38) fiduciary
to the client and what boxes are checked from our
full menu of services. At the end of the day, we cater to
the needs of both the employers and the employees. Most
clients want our full suite of services, everything from
employee education to plan design consulting. However,
some of our clients may want the full suite, plus additional
programs such as our Advisor Managed Account offering
and/or employee engagement/wellness offering. We can be
flexible based on the client's needs and adapt our service
model accordingly.
PA: Have you, in the past, had any issues of role overlap
or poor communication with recordkeepers or investment
managers that have created conflict?
Connell: We make a point of knowing who the recordkeeper's
plan contacts are and creating communication guides for
every plan so we know who is the daily contact, the relationship
manager, the compliance person if they have one, the
investment contacts. We want them to know our team and
32 | planadviser.com September-October 2021
Art by Giulia Sagramola
http://www.planadviser.com

PLANADVISER - September/October 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of PLANADVISER - September/October 2021

Masterminds of the Plan
"PLANADVISER’s 2021 Top 100 Retirement Plan Advisers"
How to Optimize Connections
Defining Roles
Building Strategic Partnerships
Different Strokes
Cybersecurity Considerations
Provider Recommendations
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - Cover1
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - Cover2
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 1
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 2
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 3
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 4
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 5
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 6
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 7
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 8
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 9
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 10
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 11
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 12
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 13
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 14
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 15
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 16
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 17
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - Masterminds of the Plan
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 19
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 20
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 21
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - "PLANADVISER’s 2021 Top 100 Retirement Plan Advisers"
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 23
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 24
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 25
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 26
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 27
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - How to Optimize Connections
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 29
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 30
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 31
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - Defining Roles
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 33
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - Building Strategic Partnerships
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 35
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - Different Strokes
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 37
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - Cybersecurity Considerations
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - Provider Recommendations
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - 40
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - Cover3
PLANADVISER - September/October 2021 - Cover4
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/september_october_2021
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https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/may_june_2021
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/march_april_2021
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/january_february_2021
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/november_december_2020
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/september_october_2020
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/july_august_2020
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/may_june_2020
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/march_april_2020
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/january_february_2020
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/november_december_2019
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/september_october_2019
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/july_august_2019
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/may_june_2019
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/march_april_2019
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/january_february_2019
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/november_december_2018
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/september_october_2018
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/july_august_2018
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/may_june_2018
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/march_april_2018
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/january_february_2018
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/november_december_2017
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/september_october_2017
https://www.planadviserdigital.com/planadviser/july_august_2017
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