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An “Institutional Investor” means any:

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  • employee benefit plan, or multiple employee benefit plans offered to employees of the same employer, that meet the requirements of Section 403(b) or Section 457 of the Internal Revenue Code and in the aggregate have at least 100 participants, but does not include any participant of such plans;
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At your service

All too often, plan sponsors can be overwhelmed by their expanding roles and responsibilities. Retirement plan financial advisors can be of assistance with a tried and true sentiment: lean on me.

One way you can provide value to your plan sponsors is by helping them evaluate and manage existing service providers. It is a unique opportunity for you to provide important insights that guide them toward the best decision for the plan.

For example, take inventory of all existing service providers for the plan and then sit with the plan sponsor and ask these questions:

- What do they offer?

- What are their strengths?

- What are their weakness?

- What is the structure of their pricing and fees?

You might also offer to:

- Assist with service provider selection

- Assist with plan conversion and any change in service providers

Bear in mind that the path of least resistance is to not change the vendor unless, of course, it is in the best interest of the plan and its participants. In most instances when something is wrong, it isn’t because the plan is broken. It is usually because the previous advisor wasn’t doing his or her job.

If you are onboarding a new plan sponsor, uncovering any issues with existing service providers could be extremely beneficial. Consider asking a series of questions to help a plan sponsor divulge his or her biggest gripe with service providers.

These questions can help you figure out any issues the plan sponsor wants to address:

1.  If you could start again from scratch, what three areas would you want to improve upon the most?

2.  What three issues worry you the most today?

3.  What three things influence building trust with service providers? (Prompted answers could include: Delivering on promises, making things simple for participants, calling me regularly.)

4.   What services are most important to you? (Prompted answers could include: Monitoring and reviewing investment options, employee education and enrollment meetings, plan design, fee transparency.)

The bottom line is plan sponsors and participants need help, and retirement plan advisors have an incredible opportunity to stand apart by helping them manage service providers more efficiently.


Victory Capital, Inc. is a Registered Investment Advisor. The information in this article is based on data obtained from recognized services and sources and is believed to be reliable. Any opinions, projections or recommendations in this report are subject to change without notice and are not intended as individual investment advice. Not to be used as legal or tax advice.

This material is for information and illustrative purposes only and is not intended to be viewed or construed as a recommendation or suggestion that you take a particular course of action with regard to investments. In providing this material, we are not undertaking to give advice in a fiduciary capacity, to you, or to any retirement account(s) for which you act as a fiduciary. 
An investor should consider a fund’s investment objectives, risks, charges and expenses carefully before investing or sending money. This and other important information about funds can be found in the fund’s prospectus, or, if applicable, the summary prospectus. To obtain a copy, visit the ETF prospectus page or Mutual Fund prospectus page. Read a prospectus carefully before investing.

Investments involve risk including possible loss of principal. The value of the equity securities in which the fund invest may decline in response to developments affecting individual companies and/or general economic conditions. Dividends are never guaranteed. International investing involves special risks, which include changes in currency rates, foreign taxation and differences in auditing standards and securities regulations, political uncertainty, and greater volatility. Emerging markets involve heightened risks related to the same factors as well as increased volatility and lower trading volume. You may lose money by investing. There are no guarantees the funds will achieve their investment objectives and strategies may be unsuccessful.

ETFs have the same risks as the underlying securities traded on the exchange throughout the day. Redemptions are limited and often commissions are charged on each trade, and ETFs may trade at a premium or discount to their net asset value. There can be no assurance that an active trading market for shares of an ETFs will develop or be maintained. The ETFs are not actively managed and may be affected by a general decline in market segments related to the Indexes. The ETFs invest in securities included in, the Index, regardless of their investment merits. The performance of the ETFs may diverge from that of the Indexes. 

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This material does not constitute a distribution, offer, invitation, recommendation, or solicitation to sell or buy any securities; it does not constitute investment advice and should not be relied upon as such.  Investors should seek independent legal and financial advice, including advice as to tax consequences, before making any investment decision.

Mutual funds distributed by Victory Capital Advisers, Inc. ("VCA"). ETFs distributed by Foreside Fund Services, LLC. Victory Capital Management Inc. is the adviser to the VictoryShares ETFs and Victory Funds. Victory Capital is not affiliated with Foreside Fund Services, LLC.

Nasdaq is a registered trademark of Nasdaq, Inc. and its affiliates (together,“Nasdaq”) and is licensed for use by Victory Capital. The product(s) are not issued, endorsed, sold, or promoted by Nasdaq. Nasdaq makes no warranties as to the legality or suitability of, and bears no liability for, the product(s). Nasdaq is not affiliated with a fund or advisor.

For specific questions about your account or other customer-service related inquiries, please contact Victory Capital directly.