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We would like to submit an RFP for invtmnt advry srvs for a DCplan. Can u provide us a scope of work doc template?

Dec 09, 2013 by Douglas from Montvale, NJ in  |  Flag
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  1. Company Name
  2. Company Address
  3. Primary Contact Name, Phone, Email, Years in Business, Current/Pending Claims, Include Biography, Years with current firm
  4. Will the primary contact be the only person we will be working with?
    4b. Secondary Contact 4c. Third Contact
  5. Are there any expected changes in the ownership of your company in next 2 yrs?
  6. How many years has your firm been in business?
  7. Briefly describe firm history.
  8. Does your firm have any ownership interest in any other financial services firm?
  9. Does your firm have any ownership interest in any 401k Recordkeepers?
  10. Total number of employees
  11. Firm wide Market Positioning/Assets Under Advisement/Management (Include ALL Assets)
  12. How much of the above represents Defined Contribution Plan Assets that are participant directed assets by Firm?
  13. How much of the above assets (Defined Contribution Plans) do you/your team manage?
  14. How many Defined Contribution, Participant Directed, 401k Plans do you personally manage? (You or the team that would be assigned to our account)
  15. Please list the types of all services your firm offers.
  16. Describe your firm’s approach to 401(k) Plan investment consulting, including your beliefs on asset allocation, target retirement funds, and general process of Defined Contribution Plan investing.
  17. Is there any pending or threatened actions against your firm?
  18. Has your firm EVER been involved in any legal actions regarding services provided by your firm?
  19. Describe what differentiates your firm from other investment consulting firms.
  20. Does your firm provide written Agreements or a Letter of Engagement?
  21. Explain your position on Fiduciary Responsibility as an investment advisor.
  22. What “type” or “level” of Fiduciary responsibility does your firm provide?
  23. How is your firm compensated for services?
  24. Do you provide an investment policy statement?
  25. Does your firm receive any form of compensation or benefits from companies or individuals whose products or services you may refer or recommend? If yes, please explain.
  26. Have any individuals from your firm ever been disciplined by any government regulator for unethical or improper conduct or been sued by a client who was not happy with the work performed by the firm?
  27. Please provide a representative list of current clients.
  28. Provide four (4) current clients of similar size for reference. Provide name, address, phone and contact email address
  29. Explain how you and your firm will interact with the plan recordkeeper
  30. How often would you “benchmark” a plan of our size?
  31. Why should we hire you/your firm instead of any other?
Comment   |  Flag   |  Dec 09, 2013 from McLean, VA

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George Cones, JD Level 20

Douglas,

I am not sure if you are just looking for information relative to an Investment Advisor or relative to all the 401(k) plans services. Some of the suggestions here go beyond just the Investment Advisor, so please disregard if they are not applicable.

Mr. DeNoyior has come up with a good list, but here are a few additional questions and items that we would suggest which you request responses in writing. Since you are preparing an RFP, it sounds like you have that covered. Over the years we have found that front line sales people would like to be very accommodating, but the legal department and compliance at the firm prohibit certain clauses in a contract.

Ask if the investment person will be acting as a Broker or Registered Investment Advisor.

Who will we be working with, with their names and bios?

As part of your due diligence, one of the most important questions to ask is, "Will you accept fiduciary duty for your services in writing?" The answer to this question could tell you a lot about the provider. If the provider is willing to accept fiduciary duty, then hose fiduciary duties should be spelled out in detail. (note: There may be ways of minimizing your fiduciary exposure if you follow certain rules relative to delegation of your fiduciary authority).

Ask for a copy of Part I and Part II of the firms ADV. You may also look the firm up on the SEC website, http://www.sec.gov/investor.shtml , on the left hand is a link to check out brokers and advisors . Look through this form and you should find the ADV Parts 1 and 2. Look through that document especially ownership information and disclosures.

You can also go to FINRA.org, and look up the individuals who will be working with you, and print a detailed history which would include any disciplinary information.

Are the services bundled or unbundled, with other plan services (custody, record keeping, computer interface).

Are all of the investment in the portfolio actual mutual funds, which can be tracked on the exchange or are they Insurance Fund Accounts that are difficult to track on a daily basis.

Does the firm have an Fiduciary Bond and E&O insurance.

Ask for a sample plan portfolio with detailed information about the holding including TICKERS.

Comment   |  Flag   |  Dec 09, 2013 from Wilmington, DE

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The Retirement Plan Advisor Council offers a good DC plan advisor RFP and some suggestions on how to go about your search (protocol). Visit the website at www.dcpiadvisors.com and click on Advisor Search RFP at the top of that page or go directly to www.dcpicadvisors.com/advisorsearchrfp.html .

Comment   |  Flag   |  Jan 16, 2014 from Medfield, MA

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