Navigating the Retirement Industry and Client Relationships in a Post-Pandemic World | Schwab - Millennium Trust Company

Navigating the Retirement Industry and Client Relationships in a Post-Pandemic World

July 9, 2020
By Millennium Trust
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The post-pandemic world will reveal that the ways in which we live, work and manage client relationships have changed for the long haul. As we eventually come out on the other side of the coronavirus pandemic, the retirement industry will have to address these changes from a comprehensive lens and provide clients with higher levels of client service.

We asked some of our Relationship Managers how they foresee the retirement industry changing, and how the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted their connections with clients.

More than Just Retirement Plans

“One of the all-too-real lessons learned during this pandemic crisis is that a significant portion of Americans do not have adequate savings,” said VP, Senior Relationship Manager, Cari Stables. “The groundwork has yet to be laid to inspire Americans from an early age to regularly set aside a small amount of their income for emergencies.”

Ideally, everyone should have at least three to six months of living expenses saved for unexpected emergencies – which could be anything from medical bills to car repairs to job loss. The retirement industry and employers can step up to promote education and offer emergency savings programs that complement retirement plans.

Educating employees on the importance of having separate funds for emergency savings and retirement savings, as well as overall financial wellness, will help protect retirement savings and also result in a more productive and loyal workforce.

“There are multiple ways to structure emergency savings programs,” said SVP, Business Development Director, Kevin Clark. “Retirement saving providers could offer an easy and automatic emergency savings option to plan participants, while also simplifying administrative processes.”

Going Above and Beyond with Client Service

“Until a vaccine is available, client relationships and interactions will not be the same. In person meetings, industry events and conferences have been postponed for the foreseeable future,” added Relationship Manager, Michelle Paul. “The pandemic has required quick adoption of new methods of how we meet and communicate with clients, and I don’t see this going away any time soon.”

Our digital experience, as well as our dedicated service team, have allowed us to continue to help clients with a wide range of needs.

“Millennium Trust has been hosting or partaking in informational webinars and holding virtual meetings, but beyond what’s become the standard, we want to connect with our clients on an individual level and truly understand the ways we can address their unique challenges.”

VP, Senior Relationship Manager, Karen Boyle, shares one way she’s connected with clients in spite of stay-at-home and social distancing orders.

“At the start of quarantine, it became apparent that working remote seemed to have made many of us more apt to pick up the phone or answer that email. The distractions of office life and water cooler chatter fell by the wayside.

We are social beings, and our forced remoteness has had us pivot toward outreach. We spent weeks or even months wanting to know if anyone else wasn’t getting fifth grade math. Was Zoom a total no-go for a bit because your best barber or hair stylist was unavailable?

People have craved diversion and good news, so I’ve sent my clients fun and educational tours such as the British Museum, National Women’s History Museum, Vatican Museums and the San Diego Zoo. I touted the Panda Cam as a Zen-like, mid-day break (and a great distraction for kids), and found it to be a hit.”

During a time like this, many of us have been able to connect on a more human level. As life returns to “normal,” and we fall back into old habits, it’s important to continue that engagement with clients.

“These are incredible times we are living through. Communication with my clients has revealed a true human-ness, and allowed us to connect in new ways,” said Karen. “Whether it’s handling a terminated plan, understanding how to reduce costs for your plan or decreasing administrative burdens, we are here at Millennium Trust to be your ally.”

Learn more about our Retirement Services.

The material in this blog is presented for generational informational purposes only. The information presented is not investment, legal, tax or compliance advice. Millennium Trust Company performs the duties of a directed custodian, and as such does not offer or sell investments or provide investment, legal or tax advice.

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