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Kim Weaver, Director of External Affairs at the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, talks about the Thrift Savings Plan participant satisfaction survey and website update

Each year the Thrift Savings Plan conducts a satisfaction survey with participants. The most recent results reflect 87% satisfaction and participant desire to have more informative resources. Director of External Affairs at the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, Kim Weaver, gave Government Matters’ Francis Rose an inside look at this year’s findings.

Results from the satisfaction surveys are used to inform the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board’s work and improve overall experience for participants.

Past survey results informed the board that participants wanted additional withdrawal options, which led to their implementation. The biggest takeaway from the most recent survey was that younger members, particularly Uniformed Service members, wanted a mobile application. Weaver shared that the app is in the works but would not be an immediate deliverable.

“We’re in the midst of a record keeping procurement. Currently the board is sort of the integrator of the record keeper; our call centers, our service bureau … and we put out a procurement that the contractor would integrate all that,” said Weaver. “As a result of that procurement, we will get an app that’s very similar to the private sector apps.”

Survey collection started in mid-March, about the same time that the COVID-19 pandemic crippled the U.S. as the market took a plunge and most businesses shutdown. Findings show that participant satisfaction and market standings go hand in hand, which speaks to the minor 2% decline from last year’s satisfaction results.

Another major takeaway from the survey found that participants would like to see better instructions and tutorials for planning retirement strategies. Weaver explained that participants’ concerns were heeded in the implementation of a redesigned website.

“We redesigned our website … unveiled it in mid-July, and it’s the first time we’ve redesigned the website in 10 years,” said Weaver. “This time we went into it to answer the question, ‘How do I?’ … We can make changes as we need to, to respond to any desires that people have.”

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