RetireReady Solutions Blog

Welcome to the TRAK Retirement Planning Blog.

Ironmans and Financial Advisors

May 18, 2021 by Edward Dressel -

Recently I finished a Half Ironman Triathlon in St. George, Utah. It was a great race: swimming 1.2 miles, biking 56 miles, and then running the half-marathon, 13.1 miles. That’s 70.3 miles in total! The elevation gain of just over 4,400 feet had me contemplating quitting. At times, it felt like torture. But I finished, and for me, I finished...

Key Elements to Effective Virtual Meetings, Part IV

March 09, 2021 by Edward Dressel -

When making key decisions, businesses must do a lot of research. Poor decisions can cost companies millions—or even push the company into bankruptcy. In contrast, good decisions can place a company well ahead of the competition. Having clear, understandable, and actionable information is the starting point of any good decision-making process....

Key Elements to Effective Virtual Meetings, Part III

February 02, 2021 by Edward Dressel -

A few years ago, while my oldest daughter was studying abroad in France, my wife went to visit her during spring break. Soon after arriving, they traveled to Africa to visit some family friends. They got very little sleep during their return red-eye flight, but when they landed they picked up their rental car and headed out to see France. Their...

Key Elements to Effective Virtual Meetings, Part II

December 22, 2020 by Edward Dressel -

Trying to engage Americans in retirement readiness has never been easy. Pop culture provides plenty of evidence of that, from cartoons poking fun at boring meetings with financial advisors, to Super Bowl “This Is Getting Old” commercials from E-Trade about Americans working well past the normal retirement age. And COVID-19 restrictions have...

Key Elements to Effective Virtual Meetings

December 01, 2020 by Edward Dressel -
Oh, for normal days again—but I am no longer sure what “normal” is. In a world where it was always challenging to engage people about retirement, COVID-19 precautions have made it more difficult than ever.

Getting a Clear Picture of Retirement

October 06, 2020 by Edward Dressel -

The following blog is written for the client. A resource to help explain what an Integrated Benefit Analysis is and why they need it from their advisor. 

Putting Clients in the Driver's Seat

September 22, 2020 by Edward Dressel -

Since COVID lockdowns began about six months ago, interacting with customers has become more interesting than ever. I have been listening intently, wanting to know what has helped some advisors continue to succeed. What are they doing differently that helps them achieve success, often beyond what they achieved prior to COVID?

Thinking of Creating Your Own Software?

August 04, 2020 by Edward Dressel -

“We’re thinking we’ll create our own software,” a prospective client told me recently. I sighed, partly because I might lose a sale, but more so because I am well aware of the difficulties of developing your own software.

Good Information or a Good Ear?

June 09, 2020 by Edward Dressel -

The amount of education and professional licensing a typical advisor has is amazing. Most have a bachelor’s degree, and some have an MBA or other master’s degree. Add to that the professional licensing required of an advisor: Series 63, Series 7, and additional state licensing for life and other insurance policies. In addition, designations...

Growing Opportunities with Boomers in Stormy Markets

April 28, 2020 by Edward Dressel -

As a teenager living in Africa, I remember lightning striking very close to me a few times. One time, I had been on the phone and found myself on the floor wondering what had just happened. Another time, a tree standing 100 yards from my house blew apart with a loud, awesome explosion. I will never forget those moments, yet I have seen...

Going Remote

March 24, 2020 by Edward Dressel -

The needs we had yesterday are different than the ones we have today. COVID-19 is rattling the stock markets, shuttering schools, quashing March Madness, upending travel plans, and introducing terms like “social distancing.” The world is changing like never before.

As we collectively prepare to “hunker down,” telecommuting offers a way to...

Knowing the Why?

March 03, 2020 by Edward Dressel -

For better or for worse, knowing why something is a certain way can make a world of difference in how we approach it. For example, if you see a “Road Closed” sign and you believe it’s there because the local government likes to frustrate residents, you might decide to drive around the sign. However, if the real reason for the sign is that a...

TRAK 2020: A Bit Late—But Nothing Like the Iowa Caucuses

February 11, 2020 by Edward Dressel -

Those of you who have been using The Retirement Analysis Kit for years may have noticed that our 2020 release happened later than usual. We strive to release updates by mid-January, but this year the street release was on January 21 and the corporate updates went out on February 3.

We received a few phone calls from users who wanted to receive...

IRS 2020 Contribution Limits

November 06, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

The IRS released the 2020 contribution limits on November 6. Thank you for your efforts and time spent bettering the retirement outcomes of your clients! As you begin planning for the new year we wish you the best in the various markets you serve.

Grow Retire Ready Clients Podcast

October 22, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

After 33 years of developing retirement planning software, answering support calls, attending trade shows, developing updates, and designing new tools, we thought it was time to start sharing many of the amazing stories we have encountered. Our passion to provide top of the line sales and planning tools is fueled by the knowledge that our...

Best FinTech Solution for 401k communication

September 05, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

Helping Advisors Build Trust with Clients

Dallas, OR : At the 2019 DC Genie Awards, 401kTV named RetireReady Solutions® the winner of the Employee Communication Award. The award recognizes excellence and innovation in the 401(k) industry, specifically for providing tools for advisors and plan sponsors to engage employees in their retirement...

Financial Advice Meets Healthcare Awareness

August 22, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

For many young investors, coming to grips with their inevitable decline in health and escalation of healthcare expenses is difficult. Advisors know that clients who fail to factor long-term care and health-related costs into their retirement plans are in for a rude awakening. When a crisis strikes or a retiree has unrealistic expectations of...

Close the Gap Between Knowing and Doing

August 14, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

Americans know a lot. We have all the data to know that physical exercise is important, nutritious diets improve our health, distracted driving is a bad choice, and saving for retirement when we are younger is a great idea. However, roadblocks (often in the form of fear and uncertainty) frequently prevent us from acting on all that information.

What's the Value of Financial Advice?

August 06, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

Agreeing on the value of financial advice may seem easy given the wealth of information available on the internet. Yet the findings of a recent Morningstar survey reveal ample opportunities for advisors and investors to get on the same page.

Adapting Fee Structures to Meet Shifting Investor Expectations

July 25, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

Are you one of the 52% of advisors who have changed their fee structure within the past four years? Fees at a Crossroads Revisited, published by the SEI Advisor Network, provides valuable insights for those evaluating their fee structure. Their research has revealed a notable shift in the attitudes of both advisors and consumers.

Five Myths to Reconsider about Advising Federal Employees

July 08, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

Some retirement advisors are unaware of the benefits of serving federal employees, while others choose not to work in the federal market. By doing so, they are leaving tremendous opportunities untapped. In this article, I explore five myths that too often discourage advisors from working with federal employees. Thank you to ProFeds “Top 10...

Leverage Micro Plans for Macro Growth

July 02, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

I often speak with advisors, particularly in the 401(k) market, who pass over small accounts because they don’t believe they have enough profit potential. PLANADVISER’s 2019 Micro Plans Survey presents insights based on data gathered from 4,000 plans. One-third of these defined contribution plans have less than five million dollars in assets...

Bucket Strategy Part 3: Step by Step Guide Within TRAK

June 04, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

You’ve researched the bucket strategy, you see the potential it has for your clients and your business, and now you need the means to use it. The first two parts of this series explored the strategy and how to introduce it to clients. This final segment provides TRAK users with a step-by-step guide for implementing the strategy.

Navigating the Ripple Effects of Student Debt

April 16, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

The ever-growing burden of student debt is a source of alarm for many Americans. The weight of these debts is born by people of all ages—not just millennials. According to the U.S. Department of Education, the total amount of debt carried by adults over age 35 is 200 billion dollars more than that of those under age 35. Financial advisors must...

Bucket Strategy Part 2: Who Wants It and How to Win Their Business

April 09, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

The bucket strategy is growing in popularity as Americans seek ways to ensure their hard-earned money will last throughout the entirety of their retirement years. This second installment of a three-part series on the bucket strategy explores how advisors should approach the strategy to generate more business. I have seen firsthand how The...

The Bucket Strategy: What It Is, and What It Can Do for You (Part 1)

March 12, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

In this first installment of our bucket strategy series, we explore what the bucket strategy is and why it is worth your time as an advisor. Understanding the fundamentals of the bucket strategy and the value it provides to clients will lead into two more segments: “Who Wants the Bucket Strategy and How to Win Their Business” (Part 2) and...

Choice is the Driving Factor in 403(b) Participation

February 21, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

“Teachers are expected to reach unattainable goals with inadequate tools. The miracle is that at times they accomplish this impossible task.” – Haim Ginott

Many of us read this quote and fondly recall a teacher who made a significant impact in our formative years. Teachers face many challenges in the classroom, carefully balancing the...

Averages Fail to Engage Participants, So Move Beyond the Mean!

February 14, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

Given the countless variables involved in assessing risks, needs, and strategies for retirement readiness, turning to averages provides a false sense of security and control. However, No One is Average, a report from J.P. Morgan, warns that “averages can be distorting because, in fact, no one is average.”

Don't Settle for Auto Enrollment—Push for Higher Contributions

February 13, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

A 2018 study by J.P. Morgan shows that automatic enrollment increases the number of Americans saving for retirement. This is an important step in the right direction, but are they saving enough? The 401(K) market space has significant room for higher AUM and participant engagement. Ready! Fire! Aim? 2018, a J.P. Morgan report correlates current...

RetireReady Partnering with ARA and NTSA to Benefit Advisors, Participants

January 23, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

Dallas, OR (January 23, 2019) — RetireReady Solutions® is kicking off the new year by announcing its new partnership with the National Tax-Deferred Savings Association (NTSA), a member of the American Retirement Association (ARA). Through the partnership, RetireReady will support the launch of NTSA’s Certified Retirement Education Specialist...

TRAK Introduces Custom Glide Path Functionality

January 22, 2019 by Edward Dressel -

Assisting clients or plan participants in their pursuit of retirement readiness requires effective, engaging tools that empower your interactions. Visual aids are particularly effective, but they must strike the proper balance between adequate data and simplicity.  Keeping illustrations easy to understand engages the individual and expedites...

Survey on 403(b) Provider Options Reveals Surprising Results

November 13, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

In the 403(b) world, new survey results link participation and contributions rates to the number of providers available to choose from. If you thought that rates increase with fewer choices, you would be wrong! New survey data released today by the National Tax Deferred Savings Association reveals that increased participation and contribution...

Showing Projected Monthly Retirement Income Increases Plan Contributions

October 02, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

Plan advisors are always looking for good ways to motivate participants to increase their retirement plan contributions. There are many tactics to accomplish this ranging from advisor-driven approaches such as providing personalized retirement projections to plan-centric approaches like auto-escalation. New research from LIMRA’s Secure...

New TRAK Features - Fall 2018

September 17, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

Our industry is constantly changing and here at RetireReady, we are also constantly looking at ways to improve our solutions. Our goal is to be continually improving to help our advisors be more efficient, help more people, and grow their businesses. We have recently introduced a number of new features in TRAK and have created a brief video...

Five Congressional Retirement Bill Highlights

September 05, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

While it seems that there is little that Republicans and Democrats see eye to eye on, one area of bi-partisan agreement centers on retirement reform. Many Americans are in dire financial straits and a potential retirement crisis looms in the future with longer lifespans, little saved for retirement and potential Social Security benefit...

Calculating Federal Deposit and Redeposit Service

August 27, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

One of the purposes of The Retirement Analysis Kit (TRAK) and TRAK-Online software is to reduce the complexity of financial planning – a solution to help advisors with the many complex calculations and illustrations while producing results that clients can easily understand. Nowhere is this more helpful than working with pension plans, which...

Plan Sponsors Focus on Retirement Readiness - But is it Enough?

August 15, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

Plan sponsors are finally focusing on the metrics that will help their employees better prepare for retirement. In Fidelity’s ninth edition of its Plan Sponsor Attitudes survey the survey revealed that retirement readiness is now top of mind for plan sponsors. The top concern of plan sponsors in 2018 is “Is the plan effectively preparing...

40 Open-Ended Questions to Engage Your Clients

June 26, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

Questions hold a special power of engagement which can help build rapport and trust between people. I think most people get this instinctively and, as we wrote recently, there are studies which reveal the unique strengths of asking questions. However, for many of us, being a good question asker does not come naturally and it is a skill that we...

Take-Aways from the Social Security Trustees' Report

June 18, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

On June 5th, the Board of Trustees of the Social Security Trust Fund released their annual report. As you may expect, the report does not paint a rosy picture for the future of Social Security. Below are some take-aways from the report.

How to Build Client Relationships with Questions

June 12, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

How would your business grow if you could deepen your relationships with clients? If your clients were more engaged in the financial planning process, how would that improve the outcome for them and for you? What might be the impact if potential clients found you more likeable and easier to relate to?

Your Retiring Federal Client May be Eligible for Additional Income

June 04, 2018 by David Black -

Recently, I attended a federal benefits seminar where a group of about 40 federal employees were learning more about their benefits. About two-thirds of the attendees indicated that they would be retiring in the next five years and the presenter asked them the following question, “How many of you know that if you retire before age 62 in FERS...

Changing Trends in 401(k) Litigation

May 14, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

We read about lawsuits brought against plan sponsors with increasing regularity. As one reads the stories trends begin to emerge regarding the causes of these lawsuits. This month, the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College released a study documenting the causes and consequences of 401(k) lawsuits. With over 100 new 401(k) related...

Do Retirement Decumulation Assumptions Match the Data?

May 08, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

The key purpose retirement planning and savings is to ensure a source of retirement income adequate to meet the needs of the individual throughout their lifetime. There are many studies looking at the accumulation period such as how much the average person saves, average account balances and retirement plan participation rates.  There are fewer...

Illustrating Stretch IRAs in TRAK-Online

April 03, 2018 by Edward Dressel -

Advisors to high net worth families work hard to help their clients minimize their taxes and ensure that the fruits of their hard work, their assets, can be passed on to younger generations. One strategy for transferring wealth to younger generations and reducing tax liability is to use a “stretch IRA” strategy. This strategy involves naming...

Changing Retirement Plan Trends in the Healthcare Industry

December 11, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

What retirement plan trends are evident in the healthcare industry? This is the question explored by Transamerica in their recently released study “The Path to Wealth Starts with Health: 2017 Retirement Plan Trends in Today’s Healthcare Market”. As healthcare organizations move away from offering defined benefit plans and seek to find...

Tips for Matching a Paycheck in TRAK and TRAK-Online

December 04, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

One of our most popular and powerful calculators is the Paycheck Calculator. This calculator, available in both TRAK and TRAK-Online, is powerful because when configured correctly you can match a client’s paystub, often down to the penny. Why is this so powerful? Because when you can recreate a client’s paycheck it allows them to see how...

Plan Portal Design Trends Still Miss the Mark

November 20, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

A recent article on explored some of the improvements to participant retirement plan portals being implemented by the big players like Fidelity and Vanguard. The article points out that plan portal design has improved vastly and how the types of data available, how it is presented, and the options given to participants are...

Better Participant Outcomes: The Solution

November 13, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

As discussed in our previous post Better Participant Outcomes: The Problem, one of the biggest issues preventing better participant outcomes is participant apathy. If one of the barriers is participant apathy, what is the solution? The solution is advisor-driven participant education. Advisor-driven education is a powerful concept. Instead of...

Better Participant Outcomes: The Problem

November 06, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

The 401(k) retirement plan is the principal retirement savings mechanism for many Americans. Almost 80% of all Americans have access to a workplace sponsored 401(k) plan. With total assets of nearly $5 trillion, these plans present a tremendous opportunity for the average worker to save for a healthy retirement with an employer’s support. 

Report Service for Plan Advisors

October 23, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

We are pleased to announce a new service for plan advisors, we will create and even distribute the personalized participant reports for advisors who would like to outsource this process.

Many Employees Making Early Withdrawals from Retirement Accounts

September 25, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

In 2017, nearly one third of employees withdrew funds from a retirement account for expenses other than retirement. That is the data presented by PwC in their 2017 Employee Financial Wellness Survey. If this survey is representative of the general population then this should be cause for concern.

Connecting Your Clients to the Data

August 28, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

In previous posts (including here and here) we have talked about motivating clients through engagement and education. One hurdle many advisors face, even in an engaging educational process, is connect their clients to the data. This often occurs in two ways:

The Secret to Better Client Engagement and Fiduciary Relationships

August 21, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

How do you feel when a client doesn’t take your advice? You clearly presented and explained everything to your client, only to hear “OK, let me think about it.”

Trust Builders is now RetireReady Solutions!

August 09, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Drumroll, please! I am very excited to announce our new company name and logo:

Best Interest Transparency

June 26, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Despite the obvious need for financial help, many Americans are hesitant to meet with a financial advisor or, if they do meet with an advisor, fail to act on the advice provided to them. Why this dichotomy? If people know they need advice, why do they fail to seek it or to act on it when given?

Fiduciary Tech Helps Serve Clients' Best Interests

June 19, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

The merry-go-round surrounding the fate of the fiduciary rule took another turn as Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta announced that the agency would not extend the delay of the rule any further. Specifically, on June 9th, the impartial conduct standards came into effect and the fiduciary standard was extended to all advisors working with...

Industry Giant Vanguard Releases DC Plan Report

June 12, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Last week Vanguard released its report How America Saves 2017. Some of the most interesting pieces of the report centered on data on the increase in automatic 401(k) features such as auto-enrollment and auto-escalation, default investment options and employee contributions.

Financial Wellness: Opportunity or Current Fad?

June 05, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Financial wellness is one of the key buzzwords in our industry right now. While many are talking about it, what trends do we see on the ground? Is there a uniform understanding of what financial wellness is? Do plan sponsors want it and is it making a difference to participants?

New Budget Proposes Cuts to Federal Retirement Plans

May 29, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

To the plethora of polarizing issues coming out of Washington, why not add federal employee retirement benefits to the mix! It is no secret that federal employees enjoy a job security and retirement package that is unrivaled in the private sector. Some see these benefits as a just reward for those serving the American public. Others see them as...

IRA Savings Trends and the Need for Advisors

May 22, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Individual Retirement Accounts (IRA) make up a quarter of all retirement assets. What do we know about these accounts and the behaviors of IRA account holders? Where can advisors offer important guidance to account owners? Fortunately, new studies can help answer these questions!

What Does Delayed Retirement Cost Employers?

May 15, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

While much has been written about the general lack of retirement readiness among the workforce, there are other costs to this retirement crisis which receive less attention. Delayed worker retirement can have high costs for plan sponsors as well, another reason why it is in plan sponsors’ interests to provide a well-designed retirement plan and...

Eight Resources to Help You Use TRAK Like a Pro

May 08, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Whether you are brand new to TRAK retirement planning software or a seasoned user just trying to learn something new, we are pleased to offer a variety of support and training resources to you to help you get comfortable with the software. I want to run down all the options that are available to you.

Plan Advisors: Don’t Be a Commodity!

May 01, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Advising plan sponsors and participants is a rewarding job but, in the changing qualified plan landscape, it can be increasingly difficult to win news plans. On one side, plan sponsors are feeling the heat from recent litigation focusing on fiduciary duties, fees, fund choices and other factors. On the other side, more advisors are looking to...

How to Increase Your AUM with Your Current Participants

April 24, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

How would you like to increase your AUM without finding new clients or adding new plans? You can dramatically increase your AUM just by helping your current participants find their accounts from previous employers and roll them into the plan. This strategy is great because it piggy-backs on the participant education you are already providing,...

Retirement Advice for Our Men and Women in Uniform

April 17, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

This year may be a momentous year, financially, for many Americans with possible changes to the tax code, health care, and the financial services industry some of 2017’s many wild cards. For members of our Armed Forces, 2017 brings an additional financial question and one that financial advisors may be able to help with.

Retirement Superheros,Your Services are Needed!

April 10, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Last month, the Employee Benefit Research Institute released the 2017 Retirement Confidence Survey. In its 27th year, the survey reveals interesting information about how American workers think about and plan for retirement. While much of the report is unsurprising and somewhat depressing, some key questions about financial advice reveal that...

Slow Death of DOL Rule? TRAK Still Helps Advisors Build Trust

April 05, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Yesterday, the Department of Labor announced a 60 day delay for the implementation of the fiduciary rule. This decision moves the implementation date from April 10 to June 9. While this is only a delay and not a repeal of the rule, the delay was the give the DOL time to comply with President Trump’s executive order to re-examine the rule and...

Using Content Marketing as a Financial Advisor

April 03, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Many advisors do not realize that their expertise can be an effective marketing tool for further engaging with clients and generating leads for new business. Content marketing strategies can be an effective way to grow your business through education.

Pension Reform: Employees Are Seeing Changes

March 27, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

The effects of the 2008 financial crisis on the average American’s savings—and the emotional impact of those effects—have contributed to the push for financial reform. The effects of the crisis on retirement savings for those in defined contribution plans have been well documented, but the effects on defined benefits plans have been less...

U.S. Census Research Reveals Horrible 401(k) Statistics

March 16, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

There have been a number of surveys and reports lamenting the atrocious state of retirement readiness of the average American worker. Unfortunately, the situation is much worse than we all thought. As reported by Bloomberg, recent research by the U.S. Census Bureau revealed that only one-third of workers contribute to a 401(k) or other employer...

What Young Americans Wish They’d Learned in School

March 13, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

American financial literacy is worse than I anticipated. A recent survey conducted by FINRA asked survey participants five questions related to everyday financial and economic topics. The survey found that 63% of respondents answered three or fewer questions correctly.

Five Ways to Boost Participant Engagement

March 06, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Much of the conversation about 401(k) participation and whether participants are adequately saving for retirement centers on the plan sponsor. Plan design and administration plays a big part in plan success. However, there is still much that an individual plan advisor can do to help improve participant 401(k) plan experiences and, ultimately,...

Tips for Working with Public-Sector Employees

February 27, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Are you looking for new clients? How would you like to tap into an underserved group of over 23 million people? Your next client may be someone you already know: your mail carrier, your local fire fighter, or your child’s teacher. Public-sector employees are one of the largest groups of American workers underserved by financial advisors. A...

Common Misconceptions About Social Security

February 20, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Clients come to the retirement planning process with many misconceptions about Social Security. With inaccurate information circulating on social media and by word of mouth, financial advisors shoulder a lot of responsibility to educate clients in this area, helping them achieve a better understanding of Social Security benefits and how they...

Five Ways to Improve Communication with Clients

February 13, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Playwright George Bernard Shaw said that “the single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” As a playwright, Shaw knew the importance of really communicating with the audience, making sure that the concepts, emotions and thoughts you want to impart are what the audience actually receives.

Eight Ways to Listen Better to Clients

February 06, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

A recent Nationwide commercial struck a chord with many viewers who would rather clean the gutters, wash the cat or learn Snapchat than talk about their retirement plan. The ad is very funny and while we may laugh at the lengths the couple in the ad goes to avoid talking about their retirement plan, this is also a commentary on the retirement...

No, retirement planning is not like a slow cooker

January 30, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Retirement planning is not like a slow cooker. Just drop in the contributions, set it and forget it, and at retirement it will be ready? No, it doesn’t work that way. Retirement planning is more like preparing a gourmet French meal. It requires combining the right ingredients in the right way at the right time. Different life stages present...

Can your clients afford their kids’ college education?

January 23, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Retirement isn’t the only thing for which many families are saving; many are also trying to save for their children’s future college expenses. Faced with the need to save for retirement and the desire to save money to help defray soaring college expenses, many families are feeling overwhelmed. If you are an advisor working with mass affluent...

How will Trump's Tax Plan Affect your Clients?

January 18, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

As we sit on the eve of Donald Trump’s presidential inauguration, there are many questions about the direction President Trump will take on different issues and policies. Many of these questions are coming from the financial services industry and while much of the talk has centered on the fate of the DOL fiduciary rule, other proposed changes...

Are your clients emotionally prepared for retirement?

January 16, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Much has been written on preparing financially for retirement, and rightly so, a successful retirement is a financially secure retirement. While many people consider the financial aspect of retirement, not as many consider the emotional aspects of retirement. It can be beneficial to future retirees to think about several key factors so that...

Blame it on the Elections

January 11, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

Feel like your 2016 Q4 tanked? Feel like retirement planning is just not working like it used to with your clients (or plan participants)? You are not alone! Looking back at the last quarter of 2016, you may be wondering why you saw a decrease in client meetings, sales and other business activities. Take a page from the NFL playbook blame the... wasn't all bad!

January 10, 2017 by Edward Dressel -

The passing of the old year into the new gives us all a chance to reflect on the past year and to anticipate what lies ahead. Companies are not much different in this regard. Trust Builders is committed to constant improvement of our retirement planning software and as we review 2016 we are proud of the many changes and improvements over the...

Understanding TSP Withdrawal Options

December 29, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

Federal employees nearing retirement must make several important decisions. Besides selecting a benefit option, one of their biggest decisions is what to do with the money in their Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) account. Complicating this decision is a slew of options. Advisors to federal employees must not only understand these options, but also...

NTSA Elite Advisors Announced…74% Use TRAK

December 14, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

Congratulations to the NTSA 2017 Elite Advisor Award Semi-finalists!

How to Get Participants to Increase Contributions

December 01, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

“How can I motivate my plan participants to save more for retirement?” This is a common question for both plan sponsors and financial advisors who advise retirement plan participants. Participants know they need to save more to be on track for retirement, but getting them to commit to increasing their contributions is challenging.

Move up the alphabet from FFF to EE

October 31, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

In the spirit of the back-to-school season, let’s talk about the alphabet. Every advisor knows the three F’s: funds, fiduciary, and fees. In client meetings, financial industry websites, and online discussion forums, the three F’s tend to be the primary focus of our industry.

Talking with Clients about Long-Term Care

September 30, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

Research shows that the cost of long-term care continues to rise with significant consequences for expenses in retirement. Yet how many consumers would consider these costs without the prompting of a financial advisor?

Strategic Social Security Education Opportunities Abound

September 01, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

Nationwide Financial recently asked retired and non-retired consumers about Social Security.  The study revealed that most of the non-retirees did not know or understand their future benefits or how they would fit into their broader retirement plans.  Few had received advice on Social Security from a financial advisor—but nearly all of those...

Millennials Want Retirement Readiness Engagement

July 29, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

Do you think that millennials are not interested in your retirement planning services? Think again! A recent study has found that millennials have a keen desire to meet face-to-face with a financial advisor and that they want to understand the retirement planning process. More surprisingly, for a generation that has grown up in the digital...

Delayed Retirement Increases Life Expectancy—and Retirement Gaps

June 30, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

Clients who choose to delay their retirement may find that their decision affects more than just their retirement budget.  New research published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health found that delaying retirement can actually increase life expectancy.

TRAK and the Fiduciary Rule

June 06, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

The Department of Labor dropped a regulatory bomb on the financial services industry on April 6th. Regardless of how the dust settles regarding the true impact of the regulations, TRAK is uniquely situated to help financial advisors comply with the new fiduciary requirements.

Grow Your Business with Retirement Readiness

April 26, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

“Participant education doesn’t help advisors grow their businesses.” It was an unsolicited objection from the audience of financial advisors. Not being an advisor, I winced and tried to figure out how I, an armchair quarterback, was going to respond.

3 Ways to Engage Participants in 401(k) Education

February 19, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

If Ben Franklin had to hold 401(k) education meetings, surely he would have had participants leaning forward in their chairs.

So why do many 401(k) advisors struggle with participant education? It’s because most advisors fail to make these sessions interesting. And the fastest way for advisors to make 401(k) education interesting, is to focus...

Financial Planning Software that Wins New Clients

February 10, 2016 by Edward Dressel -

Retire Ready Solutions strives to create the ultimate retirement planning tools that allow financial advisors to win new clients and support exiting clients. That's our reason for being, our premise of existence. We do not build software for lay-people or DIY consumers, we build best in class software tools specifically for financial advisors....


With a long history of working with corporate accounts of all sizes RetireReady Solutions will draw on our experience to help your advisors increase their sales through client education.

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