The California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) is the largest educator-only pension fund in the world. CalSTRS administers a hybrid retirement system, consisting of traditional defined benefit, cash balance, and defined contribution plans. CalSTRS serves California’s more than 896,000 public school educators and their families from the state’s 1,700 school districts, county offices of education and community college districts.
On average, CalSTRS members retire at age 62 after more than 25 years of service, with a defined benefit pension that replaces about 50 to 60 percent of their salary. For new educators, the CalSTRS defined benefit pension will replace about 50 percent of their final salary. Members will need to close any gap between their target retirement income goal and their CalSTRS retirement benefit with personal savings and investments. For this reason, CalSTRS created its voluntary supplemental savings, a defined contribution plan, known today as Pension2.
With Pension2, CalSTRS offers its members and classified employees of CalSTRS-covered employers an opportunity to supplement their defined benefit pensions through pre-tax or Roth payroll contributions to 403(b) and 457(b) plans. Pension2 provides low-cost, flexible investment options with free financial services like retirement saving planning calculators, access to financial advisors, and financial awareness workshops. Voya Financial works in partnership with CalSTRS staff as Pension2’s recordkeeper.
The primary goal of the Pension2 ebook was to create an online “enrollment kit” which would include all the information, tools and resources one might need to plan for and learn about retirement. Not only did it have to be informative and intuitive, it also had to be easy to use and pleasing to the eye. The goal was not to just to make information available on a website but to create an experience that members would come to appreciate and rely on.
The Pension2 ebook was rolled out in the first quarter of 2015 and continues to be a go-to place for members to get program information. Its theme is consistent with other Pension2 materials, bringing a sense of familiarity and belonging. The ebook includes the following:
• Welcome and why Pension2
• Five reasons to start today
• Plan Highlights
• What kind of investor are you?
• Tools, calculators, and videos
• How to contact us
During the fall 2015 campaign, 9,331 accessed the ebook to learn more about Pension2 and 2,741 users interacted with the savings widget and visualized how their savings could grow. 570 people enrolled in Pension2, which accounted for 34 percent of all new enrollments from January 2015 to November 2015.
For the September through December 2015 timeframe, 10,413 people accessed the ebook, 8,938 of them unique. CalSTRS was also able to track the specific pages users interact with, allowing them to gauge interest within the site.
In this increasingly digital age, CalSTRS continues to look to the Pension2 ebook as a primary method of information delivery for its members and uses its flexibility in campaigns to help people get on a path to a more secure financial future.
To view and learn more about CalSTRS ebook online enrollment kit, visit voyadelivers.com/calstrs/ebook.