Vanguard Retirement Plan Services Receive Top Marks in Boston Research Group Surveys of Plan Sponsors and Participants
Satisfaction with Value for Cost, Investment Performance, and Participant Experience Cited for Distinction
VALLEY FORGE, Pa.--(December 08, 2010)--Retirement plan sponsors ranked Vanguard's retirement plan services top in overall satisfaction and value for cost, according to Boston Research Group's 2010 Plan Sponsor Satisfaction and Loyalty Study. In a separate study, plan participants awarded Vanguard the top spot for its participant experience.
"While some in the industry treat recordkeeping capabilities as a commodity, the results of this survey year after year prove that many plan sponsors feel that the recordkeeping experience can be highly differentiated"
The plan sponsor study also found that Vanguard ranked #1 in brand loyalty, satisfaction with investment performance, plan and participant websites, participant statements, and ERISA consulting services.
In addition, Vanguard received the highest marks for participant experience from participants responding to the Boston Research Group's 2010 401(k) Participant Study. The ranking was based on their appraisals of Vanguard's participant website, statements and call center phone representatives.
"These surveys indicate strong validation in the marketplace that quality service can be delivered at reasonable cost. We are appreciative of our plan sponsors' acknowledgement of Vanguard's efforts in providing the expertise and technological capabilities to help them offer well-designed 401(k) plans. And we are particularly pleased that our participants have been the most consistently satisfied with their website, statement and phone associate experience as they plan for their future," said Barbara Fallon-Walsh, head of Vanguard Institutional Retirement Plan Services.
The Boston Research Group findings came on the heels of a Cogent Research survey this summer that gave Vanguard the highest marks for satisfaction and loyalty from plan sponsors with more than $20 million in plan assets. The results of both surveys underscore the variation in the level and quality of services provided by retirement plan providers.
"While some in the industry treat recordkeeping capabilities as a commodity, the results of this survey year after year prove that many plan sponsors feel that the recordkeeping experience can be highly differentiated," said Gerry Mullane, head of retirement plan business development for Vanguard.
Boston Research Group (BRG) is a strategic market research and consulting firm that serves a number of industries, including the financial services industry. BRG conducts an independent annual survey of how plan sponsors perceive full-service retirement plan providers, which provide investment management and administrative services such as plan recordkeeping; accounting, legal, compliance, and trustee services; participant education; websites; customer service phone centers; and loan administration. This year's findings resulted from BRG's nationwide survey between April and July 2010 of 1,554 401(k) plan sponsors with $5 million or more in plan assets. BRG sets quotas for plan sponsor responses for each recordkeeper to achieve statistically reliable samples. Vanguard has been among the top-tier providers, as ranked by client satisfaction and cost, in every BRG survey since 2000.
BRG's 401(k) Participant Study, conducted in May 2010, resulted from a survey of more than 7,000 401(k) participants in the plans included in the plan sponsor study.
Cogent Research surveyed 2,193 401(k) plan sponsors of various sized plans (average plan assets were $7.1 million) in February and March of 2010. Cogent Research's objective was to determine how sponsors make decisions regarding their plans, measure their level of dependence on intermediaries, and gauge their awareness, overall perception, satisfaction with, and loyalty to plan providers and asset managers they select for their platforms. Cogent Research set quotas to ensure the research population was representative of the target audience in question.
Vanguard, headquartered in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, is one of the world's largest investment management companies. Vanguard manages more than $1.5 trillion in U.S. mutual fund assets. Vanguard offers more than 170 index and actively managed funds to U.S. investors and more than 60 additional funds in non-U.S. markets. Vanguard provides recordkeeping and investment services to 3.5 million participants and 1,700 plan sponsors in over 2,500 defined contribution plans, and is also a major provider of investment, advisory, and recordkeeping services to defined benefit plans.
The Boston Research Group and Cogent Research surveys were syndicated studies conducted independently by those two organizations. Vanguard neither commissioned nor paid to be included in them. Boston Research Group and Cogent Research have conducted unrelated, custom market research for Vanguard in the past.
All asset figures are as of November 30, 2010, unless otherwise noted.
For more information, visit Vanguard.com, or call 800-662-7447 to obtain a fund prospectus. Investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses, and other important information about a fund are contained in the prospectus; read and consider it carefully before investing.
All investments are subject to risk, including possible loss of principal.
Vanguard Marketing Corporation, Distributor.
For further information please contact:
Vanguard PR Hotline, 610-669-5002
Visit Vanguard's pressroom at vanguard.com/pressroom
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