We talk a lot about automatic enrollment and automatic escalation. We also love to study industry data indicating related trends, which helps when our clients ask: “How many employers use automatic enrollment?” Results from a recent Callan survey show that the answer continues to be: “More than half, and more and more each year.”

Take note of these interesting results from the 2018 Defined Contribution Trends Survey:

  • 71% of plans use automatic enrollment
  • Slightly more than 25% apply it to not only new hires, but have also applied it to existing employees
  • Of those that do not use automatic enrollment, another 10% are very likely to implement the feature in 2018
  • 80% of the private sector plans with automatic enrollment are pairing the feature with automatic escalation
  • The average default enrollment percentage has increased to 4.6%, a sharp increase from 4.0% only a couple of years ago

These trends are encouraging. They reflect that plan sponsors have identified automatic enrollment and automatic escalation as a way to make saving – at a meaningful rate, nonetheless – easier for their employees. They also likely reflect that plan sponsors have become more educated and understand that their employees appreciate automatic features.

Matt Eickman

Matt Eickman

Full Bio

Matthew loves to write. He also loves to think, though he’s probably a better writer than a thinker. He does not like to be on camera or in videos. This blog will allow him to write, challenge his ability to think, and, from time to time, test him with video blog entries.

He has a unique blend of legal and practical experience that helps us to serve our clients well. On the one hand, he has more than 12 years of private legal practice experience focusing exclusively on employee benefits, including time as a partner in an employee benefits boutique where he has represented clients in front of the DOL and IRS. On the other hand, he holds his FINRA Series 7 and 66 registrations and serves as the Director of ERISA Services for Qualified Plan Advisors.

Matthew likes to stay active. He provides fiduciary training, Investment Policy Statement design, and vendor oversight to our clients. He is an active member of the Employee Benefits Committee of the American Bar Association Tax Section, serving as Chair of the Defined Contribution Plans Subcommittee. He also has been appointed to the IRS TE/GE Gulf States Council and is a frequent speaker on regulatory developments, fiduciary responsibilities, and retirement readiness.

Most importantly, he stays active with his family. His wife, Laura, is the founder of REbeL, Inc., a not-for-profit organization. His three young boys are mixed up in far too many sports, and they enjoy traveling, watching college football, running with Dad, and rooting for the Huskers.
Matt Eickman
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