The Standard

Firm Profile

For more than 80 years, The Standard has designed, installed, administered and provided investment options for retirement plans. Clients include a wide range of corporations, governmental agencies and non-profit organizations. This experience has given The Standard the tools to develop solutions suited to the needs of both plan sponsors and participants.

Small ($1-$10 million), Mid ($10-$100 million)


As of 06/30/16
401(k): 2,421/289,297
403(b): 214/40,239
Money purchase: 41/5,838
457: 115/2,432
NQDC: 31/318
Defined benefit: 178/23,120
Cash balance: 25/1,160
Other: 52/6,080

The Standard’s net asset value open architecture platform provides access to approximately 13,000 mutual funds and we currently trade 3,000 of those. Our group annuity platform offers more than 250 options from more than 50 different fund families.

PLANS BY CHANNEL (Direct/Advisor): 7/104
Platforms used: Group Annuity and Net Asset Value (NAV)

External wholesalers focused on advisors: 21
External wholesalers focused on institutional: 3
Internal wholesalers focused on advisors: 11

Compliance support, plan benchmarking, target-date evaluation tools, training for DC plan sales/service, investment committee meetings.

The Standard works collaboratively with advisors to provide service and support that complements the advisors value proposition. In addition to our flexible service offering, The Standard provides the following advisor-focused services: Advisor council – quarterly meetings (three by phone, one in person) to gather feedback from select advisors regarding product development, technology capabilities and identifying and evaluating industry trends Touchpoints– bi-weekly emails providing updates on products and services, thought leadership and promotional/branding messaging. Power of partnership – In-person advisor site visits to The Standard’s corporate headquarters to conduct due diligence on our products and services. Part of each session includes a legal/regulatory update. Regional advisor workshops and symposiums – half to full-day sessions designed to help advisors grow and manage their practice.


Retirement income estimates/projections, Call center support, Smartphone access to participant balances, Smartphone transaction access for participants.

The Standard complements plan advisors’ services to develop an enrollment and communication strategy customized to each employer and its employees. The process begins with The Standard’s RetireReady tracker, a plan-level assessment of the retirement readiness of the employees in the plan. The results provide the basis for a strategic discussion about the health of the plan and opportunities to encourage employees to enroll and engage in their plan. Mainspring Managed, The Standard’s personalized, goal-based saving and investment plan service, is often helpful for participants to reach their retirement income goals. Mainspring Managed takes care of everything:

• A savings and investment plan snapshot that serves as a personalized retirement income gap analysis and is based on participants’ salary and other information
• Ongoing management of both their savings rate and investment allocation to help them reach their income goals.
• Accessed to licensed investment advisor representatives through a call center
• Easy to ready quarterly statements to track their progress.


The Standard helps advisors deliver significant value in three areas: Reduced administrative burden: The Standard can serve as ERISA 3(16) delegated administrative fiduciary. Maximum fiduciary flexibility: The Standard can also take fiduciary responsibility to fund selection and ongoing monitoring of plan investments under ERISA sections 3(21) and 3(38) Improved Retirement Readiness: The Standard’s RetireReady tracker report measures how prepared an employer’s workforce is for retirement. This benchmark can be applied to develop strategies to improve retirement readiness using automatic enrollment, automatic escalation, or Mainspring Managed.


The Standard offers its own proprietary Stable Asset Fund which is a general account investment option that provides plan participants with a guaranteed return of principal, along with attractive crediting rates and 100% liquidity.
The fund may represent a more competitive and stable investment alternative relative to current money market options. In certain circumstances, StanCorp Investment Advisers will act as a fiduciary on this fund. You are not required to use this fund.

The Standard’s Stable Asset Fund seeks to provide liquidity and safety of principal, along with a competitive rate of return. The Standard invests the deposits of plan participants as part of its general account assets, which include its fixed income securities portfolio and its commercial mortgage loan portfolio. A participant’s return is determined by a declared interest rate, which is accrued daily and compounded quarterly. The fixed-income portfolio has an average credit quality of A (Standard & Poor’s).

The guarantee of principal and interest credited are supported and backed by the financial strength of Standard Insurance Company. This is different from some stable value options, which are backed by the assets held in trust for the investors in the fund and whose principal is guaranteed by contracts with banks and insurance companies.

Our primary channel is to sell through advisors. There are rare circumstances where a plan is sold without an advisor, but this is not our typical model.