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What does a Pension Plan Administrator do?

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  • Written By: Licia Morrow
  • Edited By: Lauren Fritsky
  • Last Modified Date: 09 November 2016
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A pension plan administrator is in control of the retirement accounts for other individuals. She may be tasked with maintaining and updating accounts, preparing documentation, and handling customer service-related issues. This individual may work for a private or public company as a pension department employee or may work for many of the businesses and governmental agencies that require monitoring of employee retirement plans. Depending upon the size of her organization, a pension plan administrator will likely report to a senior-ranking executive, and she may be responsible for supervising and training others as well.

The main function of this job is to oversee the retirement accounts of others. This may involve varying job functions such as helping others determine their pension parameters, processing payments, and tracking plan changes. She may prepare account reports and distribute them to the proper department, agency, or individual customer. She will likely need to calculate profits, losses, and payments, and may need to track and distribute payments appropriately. The pension plan administrator will also be required to have comprehensive knowledge of government laws and regulations relating to the pension plans she maintains.

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There are many types of organizations that utilize a pension plan administrator. Private companies may need a plan administrator for employee pension plans. Depending upon the size of the company, the plan administrator may solely focus on this job duty, or may combine it with other tasks. Governmental agencies that provide benefits to many employees may also need an in-house plan administrator of this kind. Additionally, a plan administrator may work for a company whose business is helping others to invest or secure retirement income, such as pension suppliers or advisors.

In many cases, the pension plan administrator will need to work with professionals from many fields including banking, accounting, and planning management. She may need to work with internal or external advisors on budgeting, audits, and forecasting. She will also likely be involved in collaborating with those in the financial sector. This type of administrator may also be responsible for contributing to strategic planning sessions and the development of associated procedures.

A pension plan administrator spends much time collaborating with others to ensure that plan parameters are properly set, regulations and procedures are followed and that plans are effectively monitored. She may spend most of her day with others, but may also spend a lot of time working alone on documentation and computer work. She will likely need to coordinate with senior management on a regular basis, but will also have a lot of freedom to make decisions based on her industry knowledge and experience.

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