The Evolving Participant Experience

There are many aspects to today’s retirement landscape that are forcing change to the 401k participant’s experience. On November 12th, North Highland convened its Retirement Roundtable to discuss forces like regulatory change, digital transformation, generational shifts, and a focus on customer experience which have the potential to upend the participant experience.

Our panelists presented compelling reasons why plan consultants, plan providers, and plan sponsors should give special attention to the participant experience.  In the regulatory area, scrutiny over fiduciary responsibilities as well as the push for transparency continues to drive changes to the experience.

As the new generation of retirement savers, Millennials want a different type of engagement with their financial services providers in general – and their 401k is no exception. We learned that in many ways they are similar to Gen X, Gen Y, and even Baby Boomers.  However, in the digital age, Millennials have come to expect a seamless omnichannel customer experience that feels integrated with their everyday lives. Firms like Transamerica are taking deliberate steps to evolve their participant experience to meet the Millennials where they are and want to be.

Customer Experience design has really taken center stage in financial services over past few years.  The defined contribution space is ripe for transformation using cutting edge techniques like Human Experience design and journey mapping.

If you were not able to join the Retirement Roundtable on November 12th, you may view the playback by clicking this link: The Evolving Participant Experience


  • Chad Carmichael, US Retirement Practice Lead, North Highland


  • Patricia Advaney, Senior Vice President of Customer Experience, Transamerica
  • Heidi LeMieur, C(k)P DCIO Senior Consultant, Retirement Learning Center
  • Alex Iles, Customer Experience Expert, North Highland
  • Jill Jacques, Global Wealth Management & Retirement Lead, North Highland

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