SPARK Forum 2012


Sunday, November 3, 2013

9:00 am Golf Tournament –

1:00 – 8:00 pm Conference Registration

6:00 – 8:00 pm Welcome Reception with Exhibitors –

8:15 – 11:00 pm Meet and Greet with Gale Sayers –

Monday, November 4, 2013

7:00 am – 7:00 pm Conference Registration

7:00 – 8:00 am Continental Breakfast with Exhibitors –

8:00 – 8:15 am Welcome, Opening Remarks & SPARK Advisor Award Announcements

Jude Metcalfe, President, SPARK Institute and President, DST Retirement Solutions Retirement and Trust and President, SPARK Institute
Joe Ready, Executive Vice President and Director, Wells Fargo Institutional Retirement and Trust and President, SPARK Institute

8:15 – 9:15 am Marketplace Update

Bob Wuelfing, Executive Director, SPARK Institute
Ron Bush, Principal, Brightwork Partners, LLC

The Forum begins with Bob’s popular Marketplace Update. He will discuss data on the size and segmentation of various market segments and outline key trends affecting service providers and advisors. Bob will be joined by Ron Bush of Brightwork Partners, who will discuss the latest trends in distribution with a special emphasis on investment topics from an advisor’s perspective. Ron will draw on recent research with 401(k) advisors and investment selection consultants. The session will be of interest to record keepers, investment platform providers, DCIO marketers and advisors.

9:20 – 9:50 am Break with Exhibitors –

10:00 – 11:00 am Key Strategies to Accelerate Growth

Cynthia Hayes, CFA, President, Oculus Partners, LLC

Ms. Hayes will present a dynamic, multi-media look at practical, yet innovative ways for retirement plan and investment providers to unlock real growth opportunities. In a world that’s becoming increasingly commoditized, differentiation is essential. This session will arm you with actionable insight to enhance and grow your business by optimizing your product and service offerings; harness existing, but untapped, capabilities; maximize your relationships; and more.

11:05 – 11:55 am BREAKOUT SESSIONS

SESSION A – Emerging Trends in Retirement Income – What You Need to Know

Mike Westhoven, Business Development Lifetime Income Solutions, DST Retirement Solutions (Moderator)
Clark G. Frese, CLU, CPC, AIFA, Senior Consultant, Asset Strategy Consultants
Bob Melia, Vice President, Product Development, Product and Solutions Management, Lincoln Financial Retirement Plan Services
Keith Namiot, Vice President, Employer Sponsored Markets Product Development, AXA Equitable
Sara Richman, Vice President, Product Management, Great-West Financial

Retirement income solutions are rapidly on the rise. Legislative changes and other marketplace forces have acted as catalysts to product development efforts in the industry. Attend this informative session geared to helping you understand the guaranteed solutions on the retirement income landscape and emerging trends. Come away with a solid foundation on these exciting developments in the retirement industry.

SESSION B – Winning as a Total Retirement Provider with Strong Data Management

Ken Hanson, Managing Partner, SunGard Global Services

Implementing a successful data management and business intelligence strategy is essential to compete as a total retirement provider. Learn about common retirement services challenges in data management and control. Ken will also discuss how to implement back and front office data solutions to win in the marketplace. Generation Technologies

12:00 – 1:00 pmLunch

1:05 – 1:55 pm BREAKOUT SESSIONS

SESSION A – BrainWorks

John Evans, Executive Director, Janus Labs

How important is memory or focus in our business? What about creativity? This session will focus on strategies to create more mental energy and will provide a guideline on how to make your brain sharper and stronger.

SESSION B – Thriving in a Changing Landscape

Win Cody, Head of Retirement Solutions, iGATE

The retirement industry is no different than any other industries with respect to the new normal. The new normal is moving away from desktop and web-based applications to hand-held devices and mobile apps. The decision making process has shifted from strictly advisors to influencers accessible online. Critiques and accolades shared online will make or break the business. Soon, the flat world workforce will be demanding retirement offerings that are global and not local. Emerging technologies will open new avenues for the retirement industry to tap the unconventional information sources. This session will focus on how to keep up with the above-mentioned trends through technology innovation and optimized business processes.

2:00 – 2:30 pm Break with Exhibitors –

2:35 – 3:25 pm BREAKOUT SESSIONS

SESSION A – Benchmarking Target Date Funds: Art or Science?

Jeremy Stempien, Director of Investments, Morningstar Investment Management

Immensely popular and equally diverse in nature, the exercise of benchmarking target-date funds has always been an important, yet difficult task. As the industry has risen to the challenge of creating suitable benchmarks, the fundamental question still exists: “How do I know if this is the appropriate glidepath for my participants?” Join Jeremy Stempien, director of Investments for the Morningstar Investment Management Division, as he shares best practices, new methods, and real-world examples in selecting and evaluating benchmarks.

SESSION B – The Importance of Increasing Client Satisfaction in a Low-Margin World

Deborah J. Rubin, CFP, Vice President & Director National Distribution for TPA & RIA Channel Services, Transamerica Retirement Services

No matter which profession you serve, whether as a financial advisor, record keepers, third party administrator, Certified Public Accountant, or attorney; clients are demanding more from their vendors and service providers. Given today’s cost-conscious consumerism, there are many ways service providers can stand out from the competition and increase customer retention and loyalty. This session will review some of the ways service providers are creatively and successfully increasing client satisfaction in a low-margin world.

SESSION C – Advisor Best Practices for Navigating the Latest Trends in Risk

Sean Murray, CFA, SVP, National Retirement Sales Manager, PIMCO (Moderator)
Todd Levy, Chief Investment Officer, Ingham Retirement Group
Brett Shofner, Senior Vice President, American Portfolios
Kipp Small, Principal, Mercer DC Advisors

With the extreme market volatility of the past several years, and the ever increasing dependence on DC plans as a primary source of retirement income, there is more pressure and greater risk associated with helping plan sponsors design and deliver successful plans. In its most recent Defined Contribution Consulting Support and Trends Survey, PIMCO uncovered some compelling insights into how consultants are navigating these latest trends. This session will share highlights from the survey with reactions from our panel of top Retirement Advisors who will also reveal their strategies for helping DC plan sponsors and participants navigate these risks with the goal of achieving better outcomes.

3:30 – 4:30 pm Washington Update

Steve Saxon, Principal, Groom Law Group

This session will focus on major legislative and regulatory issues affecting 401(k) and other individual account retirement plans, including the impact of the November election. In particular, Steve will discuss the investment advice fiduciary proposal, the fee disclosure regulation, plan expense issues and recent developments in ERISA litigation affecting plan service providers.

5:00 – 7:00 pm Reception with Exhibitors –

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

7:00 – 8:00 am Continental Breakfast with Exhibitors –

8:00 – 9:00 am Building Operating Models for a Changing Industry

Barbara March, President, BridgePoint Group, LLC

The industry we serve is at a turning point. Participants can’t afford to retire, sponsors can’t, or won’t, pay the costs providers bear to deliver record keeping services, and advisors and TPAs are dramatically changing their service models. From a provider standpoint, we face the challenge of needing to deliver the now “commoditized” services, find ways to differentiate ourselves from the competition and produce at half the current cost to deliver service. Providers face tough choices on where to invest expertise, money and management energy to sustain and grow their businesses in an extremely dynamic environment. Providers are maturing out of the “record keeping efficiency” stage into more of an end-to-end “manufacturing mindset,” which addresses product offerings, service models, operating models and technology platforms holistically. During our session, we will explore trends and strategies that providers are employing to create differentiators and deliver commoditized services at a cost that customers are willing to bear. We will also focus on impacts to distribution channels, customers integration with “lifetime engagement” models, understanding that changing over industry means enlisting customers and distribution partners in fostering much needed change in the industry.

9:05 – 9:55 am BREAKOUT SESSIONS

SESSION A – Focus on Retirement Income: Providing Believable Solutions for Participants

Sherrie Grabot, CEO, GuidedChoice

Despite decades of educational attempts, retirement income planning remains a confusing morass for most DC plan participants and, therefore, an administrative headache for plan sponsors, providers, record keepers and advisors. The industry needs to rekindle the trust and confidence that participants need in order to achieve a “retirement paycheck” that fits their needs. In this session, Sherrie will engage attendees in a discussion about:

  • Being open and honest about fees, the range of income goals and participants outcomes.
  • Removing layers of complexity by focusing on outcomes and delivering an easy-to-understand planning experience.
  • Acting in the participant’s best interest by exercising fiduciary prudence.

SESSION B – Behavioral Finance: Why Participants Do the Things They Do

Bob Kaplan, CFP, CPC, QPA, APA, Vice President, National Training Consultant, ING

We all remember the fable of the ant and the grasshopper, where the ant who saves food for the winter months is much better off than the grasshopper who lives only for today, does not save food and is not prepared. Of course, many employees resemble the grasshopper and have put off participation in employer savings plans. The emotional behaviors of non-participating employees were studied to determine “why they did the things they do.” Once the reasons for the behaviors are known it is easier to determine a course of action for plan sponsors to help these employees prepare for retirement. The results of the study and the action items will be discussed in an interactive manner where you will learn how to work with sponsors and participants to improve the health of their retirement plans.

10:00 – 10:30 am Break with Exhibitors

10:35 – 11:25 am BREAKOUT SESSIONS

SESSION A – Unlocking Your Big Data’s Potential

Tim Slavin, Sr. Vice President, Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc.
Tom Quercia, Senior Vice President, Broadridge Mutual Fund Solutions Group

Big data can be overwhelming — particularly plan data. But there are ways to analyze and leverage plan data to unlock its hidden potential and discover its incredible value to your business. Mr. Slavin will discuss the value of this data, the implications of overlooking it, and share strategies used by top firms to grow their business through data. He’ll also discuss how to leverage your data to analyze sales and asset trends, manage risk, provide for current and future regulatory compliance needs, and improve revenue forecasting.

SESSION B – Linking Price to Results and Revenue to Costs

John Evans, Executive Director, Janus Labs
Peter Demmer, Chairman and CEO, Sterling Resources, Inc.

Peter will address how trends in requirements for success in DC services, identified in Sterling’s P2000(TM) Profitability Study, highlight a link between pricing and participant outcomes. He will discuss how these same trends are creating a new and evolving relationship between services, provider revenue, costs and the “all in” price of DC services. Topics will include trends in unit costs, revenue, pricing and “success parameters.” In addition, Peter will provide his view of the likely impact of fee disclosure, in conjunction with uncertain markets and longer term trends, on the DC industry’s future.

11:25 – 11:45 am Break / Check Out

11:45 am – 12:35 pm Increasing Market Share through the Advisor-Sold Market

strong>Bill Chetney, Executive Vice President, Retirement Partners, LPL Financial
strong>Barbara Delaney, Principal, StoneStreet Equity, LLC
strong>Kathleen Kelly, AIFA, CRPS, Managing Partner, Compass Financial Partners, LLC
strong>David Reich, Executive Vice President, Retirement Platform Development, LPL Financial

With the plethora of regulatory changes in the past few years, plan sponsors have been adding advisors to their plans at an incredible rate. They are relying on retirement plan advisors to provide them with the needed expertise and guidance to navigate the fiduciary liabilities they face with their employer-sponsored retirement plans. This has led advisors to seek broker dealers and RIAs that will allow them to act in a fiduciary capacity with their clients. LPL Financial, starting with the acquisition of National Retirement Partners (NRP), has quickly become the destination of choice for advisors who serve this market. During this session, the leaders of LPL Financial Retirement Partners, along with some of their top plan advisors (each of whom serves a different market segment), will share with you their thoughts on where they see the industry going and how you can drive your revenues by leveraging the advisor-sold market.

12:35 – 12:45 pm Closing Remarks