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The Illinois Public Pension Fund Association (IPPFA) is a not-for-profit organization founded in 1985 that is responsible for providing continuing education to public pension fund trustees. In 1998, members of IPPFA were concerned about the high cost supplemental savings program vendors where charging our members.

As fiduciaries, our members recognized that these plans were not using the same best practice principles we require for our own public pension funds. This awareness led, in 2001, to designing IPPFA’s Wise Choice for Educators® 457(b) plan, a supplemental savings plan created by public sector employees for public sector employees.

And, while we are a single platform solution, any participant can continue to work with their financial advisor through our open architecture platform.

The advantage of best practice

A best practice single platform can potentially increase employee participation.

In a multiple vendor environment employees can sometimes feel overwhelmed with choices. Study after study has shown that too many options and inadequate education impair participant decisions. In a multi-vendor environment, vendors have to spend their limited time “selling” versus taking the time to educate participants about the importance of savings and asset allocation.

Comprehensive investment education

Rather than having field representatives explaining why their product is better, IPPFA representatives spend their time explaining the benefits of savings and asset allocation.

The Wise Choice for Educators Plan itself provides a comprehensive online participant education program, full fee transparency and a strong asset allocation platform.

Since all of our participants are public sector employees and our organization evolved from public worker origins, we bring a unique understanding to the educational process.

The Wise Choice for Educators® Plan allows a school district to outsource their plan sponsor responsibilities, including fund manager selection and oversight of core investment choices. The plan also provides a hold harmless feature to the school district for outsourcing these responsibilities.

The plan has no surrender charges, no wrap fees and offers an open architecture platform. It also provides the flexibility for current participants to continue working with their investment advisor.

Take a look at our Best Practice solution

Let The Wise Choice for Educators® do the work for you

The Wise Choice for Educators® is a multiple-employer plan that provides you with everything you need to consolidate all of your 403(b) investment choices on one platform:

  • Three comprehensive investment approaches
  • Our solution allows school districts to no TPA fees
  • Improved high touch service

A single vendor solution can potentially lower fees, and increase participation, for better retirements for participants

Make the Wise Choice

After surveying the deferred compensation plans in their member jurisdictions, the IPPFA came to the conclusion that generally the plans:

  • Provided no protection to employers concerning their investment decisions
  • Were expensive
  • Were basically annuities
  • Contained expensive Contingent Deferred Sales Charges
  • Lacked adequate disclosure of fees (e.g. “wrap” and administrative fees)
  • Provided little field service to participants
  • Were a “hodgepodge” of retail investments
  • Did not offer an open architecture option

The result: The IPPFA launched The Wise Choice for Educators® Plan

IPPFA’s Wise Choice for Educators® 403(b)/457(b) plan was designed to be a supplemental savings program which incorporated Best Practice plan design and pricing to help public sector educators and staffs.

Through pooling assets through a single vendor, the buying power of the IPPFA member communities increased sharply.

IPPFA believes no employee should have less money at retirement just because their employer that does not have the scale to negotiate lower prices.