Skip to main content

You are here


Have Some Plan Designs Plateaued?

Industry Trends and Research

A recent survey by the Plan Sponsor Council of America suggests that some plan design feature adoption rates may have plateaued. What’s been your experience?

PSCA’s 62nd Annual Survey of Profit Sharing and 401(k) Plans, reporting 2018 plan activity, found that while nearly a quarter of participants (23%) elected to contribute to a Roth when given the opportunity (a 30% increase in three years) – and while nearly 70% of plans now provide a Roth 401(k) option – the number of plans offering a Roth option has plateaued, from 69.6% a year ago to 69.1% in this year’s survey.

Similarly, and while the number of plans using a default deferral rate of 6% of pay (rather than the traditional 3%) increased from 23.8% in 2017 to 29.7% in 2018, the number of plans with automatic enrollment has actually slipped – from 61.2% in last year’s survey to 60.2% in 2018.

And while more than two-thirds (68.6%) offer target-date funds in their plan, that is down 5% in just two years’ time.

Now, those are fairly recent readings, and it may be too early to label a short-term leveling of adoption rates with a long-term trend. Still, it seemed a good time to ask if you’ve seen similar reactions among the plans and prospects with which you’re working (or hoping to work).

You can respond to this week’s NAPA Net Reader Poll at And guess when we’ll have the results all sorted out?