With 2018 almost behind us and 2019 on the horizon, I’d like to express my appreciation for the relationship we enjoy with you and for the many new clients we have welcomed this year to the Bank of America Merrill Lynch family.
Listening and responding
We know the stakes are high for today’s benefits decision-makers. From an employer’s perspective, the war for talent continues unabated with unemployment levels sustained at historic lows. You’ve told us that it’s never been more important to offer employee benefit programs that meet the needs of all of your employees and help you attract and retain the talent you need to compete in today’s environment—and you continue to tell us that the financial wellness of your workforce is a top priority.
That’s where we come in. You have our pledge that we will continue to respond with new and innovative benefits programs, services, tools and tactics to engage your employees in improving their financial health. We’re proud of the steady, purposeful strides we continue to make towards our vision of workforce financial wellness, day in and day out.
That’s why we’ve continued to invest in our platform to enhance our service delivery and transform the way your employees engage with their benefits, all the while working to help make your job as a plan sponsor easier.
The rewards of an ongoing focus
Our achievements in 2018 are a testament to this focus: Throughout 2018 we experienced strong growth as an integrated financial benefit provider across 401(k), defined benefit, equity compensation, nonqualified deferred compensation and Health Benefit Solutions. This growth, along with strong results on client satisfaction surveys and independent industry recognition from J.D. Power1 and Group 5,2 to name a few, confirms that clients truly appreciate the quality of our team and how we are listening and responding to their needs.
We’ve also received positive feedback on our ongoing thought leadership efforts, such as the Workplace Benefits Report, studies on caregiving, women and life stage planning, and the insights we bring to you in the Workplace Insights newsletter you’re now reading.
Going forward, you can expect our increased financial commitment to innovating the employee digital experience, and we will continue the work we’re doing to enhance Benefits OnLine®, health benefit accounts and our mobile apps. We also continue to prioritize investing heavily in state-of-the-art cybersecurity protection and protocols.
We will continue to devote money, time and talent to engaging your employees in different and meaningful ways, especially through the personal touch of our Financial Wellness Specialists and advisors and in personal and actionable digital interactions.
As always, we remain grateful for your business and our relationship. Thank you, and best wishes for a happy and healthy New Year!
Head of Institutional Retirement Sales and Relationship Management
1 The J.D. Power Certified Contact Center ProgramSM focuses on critical areas of customer satisfaction by rewarding best practices that are aligned with customer needs. To become certified for live phone interactions, a contact center operation must successfully pass a detailed audit and also perform within the top 20 percent of customer service scores, which are based on benchmarks established in J.D. Power’s cross-industry customer satisfaction research. The evaluation criteria include the customer service representative’s courtesy, knowledge and concern for the customer; promptness in speaking to a person; and timely resolution of the problem or request. Additionally, the experience with the automated phone system is evaluated based on the clarity of the information provided, the ease of navigating the phone menu prompts and the ease of understanding the phone menu instructions. J.D. Power 2018 Certified Customer Service Program recognition is based on successful completion of an evaluation and exceeding a customer satisfaction benchmark through a survey of recent servicing interactions. The ranking or ratings shown here may not be representative of all client experiences because they reflect an average or sampling of the client experiences. These rankings or ratings are not indicative of any future performance or investment outcome. For more information, visit www.jdpower.com/ccc. Participation in this survey was paid for by Merrill Lynch.
2 Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s ratings in 2018 are based on 143 responses from plan sponsors who use Full Administration services and who participated in the 2018 Group Five Stock Plan Administration Benchmark Study. The study was conducted from May 2–June 15, 2018. Top ratings indicate Bank of America Merrill Lynch is among the plan service providers who received the highest percentage of favorable ratings from clients. A favorable rating is a rating of 7, 8, 9 or 10 on a unilateral 11-point scale with 10 being completely satisfied and 0 being not at all satisfied. By surveying companies, employees and investors worldwide for 28 years, Group Five has become one of the most knowledgeable and independent sources for client satisfaction information in the shareholder service and stock plan industries. A complimentary summary report from the most recent Group Five Stock Plan Administration Benchmark Study is available for download at https://groupfiveinc.com/benchmarks/. The ranking or ratings shown here may not be representative of all client experiences because they reflect an average or sampling of the client experiences. These rankings or ratings are not indicative of any future performance or investment outcome.