Plan Design

No two companies are the same, which is why the design of your qualified retirement plan is integral to its ultimate success. Your John Hancock team, which includes John Hancock, your local Plan Consultant and your Financial Representative, can help you design a retirement plan to reflect your company’s objectives.

John Hancock can help you design a retirement plan by creating custom plans specific to your needs, offering a wide range of qualified plan types and features that will help meet your company's goals.

Custom plans specific to your needs

It is in the best interest of your company to have a plan that’s customized for your specific needs and unique characteristics of your organization - some questions to ask:

  • What type of employees am I trying to benefit?
  • What kind of benefit do I want for my employees?
  • Are key employees maximizing their contributions?
  • Do you feel your plan allocates the right amount of employer contributions to the right people?
  • Is your plan competitive?
  • Are you satisfied with participation rate of your plan?
  • What administration costs am I able to pay?
  • How much flexibility do I need in designing a plan?
  • Does your plan offer participants a source of guaranteed retirement income?
  • Does your provider help to simplify administration?
  • Are you having difficulty passing discrimination testing each year?
  • Is your plan offering a broad range of investment options?

Benefits of a plan consultant

A Plan Consultant is integral to the overall success of your plan. Plan Consultants can help design a plan that's right for you by evaluating your business as well as employee demographics and make recommendations about what makes sense based on your specific needs.

They are specialists in maximizing the benefits that key employees receive by taking advantage of various plan design options, all while complying with the applicable tax rules to help your plan maintain its qualified status.

Utilize the expertise of a Plan Consultant who can help you target your employer contributions based on your specific company goals.

Plan types available for your organization

Once company goals and objectives have been determined, John Hancock has a wide range of qualified plan types that are available to meet those needs. These plan types include:

401(k)
Safe Harbor 401(k)
Profit Sharing
Cross Tested Profit Sharing
Roth 401(k)
Defined Benefit
Cash Balance
Money Purchase

A wide range of features

Along with plan type, your Financial Representative and Plan Consultant can help determine which features can help meet the plan's objectives:

  • Matching contribution
  • Profit Sharing contribution
  • Qualified Non­-elective contribution
  • Automatic enrollment
  • Automatic deferral increase
  • Investment options
  • Source of guaranteed
    retirement income
  • Default investment option
  • Loan policy
  • Hardship withdrawal policy
  • Vesting formula

Plan Objectives

The right combination of plan type and features can affect how employer contributions are utilized. Some reasons for offering a qualified retirement plan for small business owners include:

Competitive advantage in employee recruitment and retention

Positive effect on employee attitude and performance

Benefits a mix of rank-and-file employees and owner/managers

A well-designed plan can help you target contribution allocations, attract and retain employees, minimize compliance risk and maximize participation in the plan and control costs.

Target contribution allocations

  • The right combination of plan type and features can affect how employer contributions are utilized.
  • A well-designed plan can target certain groups of employees with different contribution allocations than other groups.
  • Plan Consultants are specialists in maximizing the benefit that key employees receive by taking advantage of various plan design options, all while complying with the applicable tax rules to help your plan maintain its qualified status.

Attract and retain employees

Your plan can also be valuable in helping you recruit and retain employees. When competing for quality personnel, an employer with a well-thought-out plan enjoys a distinct advantage.

Some key reasons for offering a qualified retirement plan for small business owners can include:

Competitive advantage in employee recruitment and retention
Positive effect on employee attitude and performance
Benefits a mix of rank-and-file employees and owners/managers

Minimize compliance risk

Sponsoring a qualified retirement plan entails a number of important responsibilities for your company.

Your plan will be subject to a number of tests each year to ensure it is operating in accordance with tax and other federal law requirements.

Partnering with a Plan Consultant helps build a plan that's tailored to your specific objectives and needs of your employees.

Maximize participation

Designing a plan that encourages employees to participate will require consideration of a number of important elements, which can all impact participation rates in different ways.

One way to encourage employees to participate are programs such as "employer match" and borrowing options that typically lead to increased participation rates.

Control costs

Together with your Plan Consultant, John Hancock can design a plan that helps meet your requirements while also saving you money. For example, your Plan Consultant can help you:

Maximize tax deductions
Minimize plan set-up and maintenance costs
Maximize tax-deferred retirement saving opportunities

Automated services that help prepare employees for retirement

JHEZstart

To help you maximize participation in your plan, JH EZstart® is our service that supports your plan’s automatic enrollment feature.

JHEZincrease®

To help participants increase the amount they're saving each year, JH EZincrease® is our automatic contribution increase service.