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The challenges in managing a retirement plan

People running workplace retirement plans have a lot on their minds. We asked, and they answered.

Hiring and retaining employees is a recurring theme when employers talk about their priorities, challenges, concerns for their organizations and their retirement plans.

So everything is on the table as an incentive—raising salaries, adding mental health resources or helping pay off student loans. “Improving pay to retain talent is our priority,” said one plan sponsor. 

1 out of 4

employers say attracting and retaining employees is their greatest concern.

1 out of 4

Join the conversation!Opens in a new window How are plan sponsors thinking differently about talent right now? Share your point of view in a short, anonymous survey. 


of employers are concerned about how they can implement cost-cutting programs.

Top employer concerns at the institutional level

Current economic conditions have exacerbated a slow recovery from pandemic losses, and institutions are balancing cost cutting with increased labor costs and wage/benefit expectations. 

One plan sponsor said: “I'm most worried about the (current) economic challenges because it's very important to survive and grow.”

Employer thinking at the plan level

In our 2022 survey of 326 American retirement plan sponsors, respondents ranked staying on top of fiduciary responsibilities as a top concern in managing their retirement plans. 

They also reported their main reason and responsibility in offering retirement plans is to ensure their employees will have sufficient income in retirement. But it remains to be seen whether they’ll succeed.


as many employers say plans should provide income instead of savings.



say they are concerned about staying on top of their fiduciary responsibilities.


The employers we surveyed told us a lot more. Read the rest in the full TMRW publication.Opens pdf

Explore other articles in this issue

5 things you need to know now

Legislation for more “SECURE” retirements.

It’s all about income

How can we fix the American retirement crisis?

How long will you live?

And can you afford the rest of your life?

Real people, real stories

How they prepared for real-life retirement challenges.

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To arrive at these findings, TIAA conducted qualitative interviews with 14 retirement plan sponsors in September 2022. We then sent an online quantitative survey to 326 plan sponsors at the end of October 2022. The plans surveyed were a mix of TIAA clients and non-clients, 60% of which had plan assets greater than $400 million.