Important Details

Employee Communications

We want to educate your employees

Business Banking with Zions Bank
 

Zions Bank is dedicated to understanding the investment education needs of plan participants. The Zions employee communications program is built on the experience of communicating with thousands of participants. The program uses video, brochure and digital projection presentations to educate, usually at no additional cost to the sponsor.

Striving to Boost Participation

Employee participation is essential to a successful retirement plan. Employees who are aware of and understand the plan are more likely to participate. When participation increases among lower-paid employees, highly-compensated employees are generally allowed to contribute greater amounts, and the plan should be more likely to meet nondiscrimination requirements.

Well-Defined Objectives

The Zions Bank communications program is based on three objectives:

  1. Convey the importance of retirement planning.
    Today, personal retirement planning may be more important than ever. The uncertain strength of our social security system, longer life expectancies, projected health care costs, decreasing company pension plans, and effects of inflation make it necessary for individuals to save for themselves in order to reach their retirement goals.

  2. Provide the tools that enable participants to make informed investment decisions. Your employees face asset allocation decisions perhaps as complicated as that of professional pension managers, especially when numerous options are offered. Moreover, it is likely that many of your employees do not invest in capital markets outside of your plan and may be unfamiliar with the basics of investing. Zions Bank seeks to empower participants with investment knowledge in order to help them make appropriate asset allocation decisions.

  3. Present information in an easy-to-understand manner. Zions Bank recognizes that the investment process can appear technical and intimidating to many employees. Our employee communications program strives to break through this barrier, using simplified terms to describe details, present facts and impart key information. The more clearly Zions Bank conveys plan and investment information, the less time your benefits staff should have to spend answering employees' questions.

A 3x3 Process

Zions Bank creates your communications program with those three objectives in view. Each segment of the program has a separate communications strategy:

  1. Motivation
  2. Education
  3. Support

1. Motivation

"What's This? - Sounds Interesting." Without awareness of the plan, there could hardly be participation. We will help you notify your employees about the plan and attempt to generate interest using several types of media:

  • Posters
  • Payroll stuffers
  • Articles available for use in corporate newsletter

2. Education

"Now That I Understand It - I Like It!" This segment of the communications program attempts to break down barriers through education. Effective education can move your employees towards participation.

Enrollment Meeting Presentation
The enrollment meeting for eligible employees is an important concept in motivating employees to participate in your 401(k) Plan. Our presentation emphasizes the value and importance of retirement planning, tax advantages of 401(k) plans, plan specifics, basic considerations for investing, and an overview of the investment options. Mutual fund prospectuses will be part of the package of materials. You can use this presentation again in your quarterly enrollment meetings.

Educational Videos [401(k) plans only]
This audio-visual tool gives a lively and compelling overview of the importance of retirement planning, which serves as a powerful enrollment-booster. You may also choose to make the videos available to employees who are unable to attend enrollment meetings.

Department of Labor 404(c) Compliance
Our educational process will enable you to comply with Department of Labor 404(c), which can reduce your liability with respect to employee investment choices.

Retirement Planning Guides 1
This brochure leads employees through a thorough, yet concise, explanation of retirement and investment basics. It incorporates a personal planning worksheet and discussions on topics such as mutual funds, dollar cost averaging, asset allocation and investment risk.

Fund Summaries
These one-page flyers are specifically designed to help defined contribution participants differentiate their plan's investment options. Each summary highlights the fund's objectives, features, risks, and investor profile and asset class.

3. Support

"Now that I've Joined the Plan . . ." Zions Bank believes employee education should be a continuous process, not a one-time event. Therefore, the final segment of the program provides periodic communications to plan participants. Not only do these communications inform participants, they may also help improve deferral rates.

Quarterly Statements

Quarterly statements will be provided for all participating employees. These statements detail the investment performance of their selected funds, the amount of money they have contributed, and any activity in their accounts. They also show loan balances and matching contributions, if applicable.

Newsletters

These communications convey the importance of retirement planning, and describe the numerous 401(k) advantages in an enjoyable, concise formula. Articles are designed to help employees understand current legislation and investment basics and often address common questions raised by participants as well as factors that might affect their retirement planning strategy.

Employer Communications

Service providers often seem to lose touch with the plan sponsor. Zions Bank, however, provides highly specialized and personal service to its clients.

Dedicated Team

All interaction between your organization and Zions Bank will be handled by your trust administrator, a retirement plan professional who has been specially trained to understand the features and needs of your plan. Your administrator will head a team of support personnel who will work to service your account, and who will actively communicate to you, the employer, all necessary details regarding the plan.

401(k) SMART!NET

INTERNET INFORMATION

The 401(k) SMART!NET is an Internet-based participant directed inquiry and transaction system that can be used to obtain information about and administer your 401(k) account including:

  • Total Account Value
  • Plan Investment Option Descriptions
  • Investment Elections and Changes
  • Balance by Contribution Source
  • Value by Investment Options
  • Vested Balance Information
  • Secure Transaction protocol
  • Human Resource and Management dedicated pages
  • Online Retirement Planner
  • Links to valuable related Internet sites
  • Available 24 Hours Every Day
  • Easy to Use

401(k) SMART!LINE

VOICE RESPONSE SYSTEM

The 401(k) SMART!LINE is an automated telephone inquiry and transaction system that can be used to obtain information about and administer your 401(k) account including:

  • Total Account Value
  • Plan Investment Option Descriptions
  • Investment Elections and Changes
  • Balance by Contribution Source
  • Value by Investment Options
  • Vesting and Plan Information
  • Accessed by Touch-Tone Telephone
  • Available 24 Hours Every Day
  • Easy to Use
 
This page was last modified on Mon Apr 21 16:04:21 MDT 2014