Apr 24, 2019

SUNNYVALE, Calif. — Financial Engines, the largest independent registered investment advisor in America, continued to demonstrate strong growth with the addition of 900+ new plan sponsors in 2018, representing more than 430,000 new plan participants. Built upon the investment techniques and methodology of Nobel Laureate and co-founder William F. Sharpe, Financial Engines provides unbiased, high-quality investment advisory and financial planning services in the workplace.

“Financial Engines launched managed accounts services in the workplace 15 years ago and boldly transformed forever how employees save, invest and plan for their financial future,” said Larry Raffone, president and chief executive officer of Edelman Financial Engines. “We’re proud of our 96% plan sponsor retention rate and sustained growth, which demonstrates the value, reach, and impact we deliver for our clients.”

In 2018, six Fortune 500 companies and many other leading employers began offering Financial Engines services to participants in their retirement plans. In addition, numerous long-standing valued plan sponsor clients renewed their agreements with Financial Engines, including Ford Motor Company, Henry Schein Inc., and Structure Tone, Inc.

Helping to fuel this growth was the company’s strategic relationship with ADP, which began offering comprehensive advisory services to its expansive list of Retirement Services clients.

“Financial Engines allows ADP to deliver well-respected participant investment advisory services to our clients,” Kristin Andreski, senior vice president and general manager, ADP Retirement Services. “This valuable service provides participants with access to personalized retirement planning and savings recommendations from Financial Engines’ nationwide network of advisors.”

“Financial Engines is honored to be trusted by employers of all sizes, from the largest plans in America to small Main Street businesses, to provide the personalized, high-quality investment advice that we believe all Americans deserve,” said Stephen Rubino, senior vice president, Institutional Services, Financial Engines. “Employers select Financial Engines for our non-conflicted advice, the financial improvements we deliver for their employees, and our ongoing investment in creating the best client experience.”

Selected by Plan Sponsors Over Competitors for its Conflict-Free Business Model

Continued sponsor demand for advisory services that are free of product conflicts has made Financial Engines the largest provider of managed accounts in the workplace. The company has more than double the assets under management of its nearest competitor and more than all managed account competitors combined1.

Financial Engines’ conflict-free business model continues to grow in importance as a differentiator. Clients surveyed in 2018 were greater than two times more likely to have mentioned Financial Engines’ independence and lack of product conflict as a differentiator when compared to clients surveyed in 2016 and 2015.

401(k) plan participants also want to work with a fiduciary that works in their best interest, according to research Financial Engines conducted last year. The study revealed that nearly nine in 10 Americans (86%) support requiring all financial advisors who provide advice on retirement assets to be legally required to put investors’ best interest first, up from 72% the prior year. More than half of respondents (59%) in the 2018 survey felt that investment advisors should be regulated by the federal government.

The company reaffirmed its commitment to advocate on behalf of all Americans for strong investment advice standards by welcoming Phyllis C. Borzi, the lead champion of the U.S. Department of Labor fiduciary rule for financial advisors, to the Edelman Financial Engines Board of Directors.

Driving Strong Results for Plan Sponsors and Plan Participants

In addition to the business model that puts the client first, plan sponsors are demanding advice services that engage their participants and positively impact outcomes. Financial Engines’ experience from decades of working with millions of plan participants, coupled with its innovative technology, has resulted in award-winning communications and engagement methods that drive broad employee usage and strong impact:

  • 100% of participants with access to Financial Engines services receive a personalized Retirement Evaluation that provides valuable guidance about their retirement.
  • Nearly 50% of all employees who have access to Financial Engines services utilize online advice, planning tools, discretionary account management, attend an educational seminar, or meet with an advisor.
  • Robust mobile engagement, with over 85% of users who accessed their retirement plan via our new mobile app established a plan or updated a stale plan.
  • Participants who use Financial Engines’ services are better off than those who do not—and the deeper they engage the greater the outcomes are. In particular, when compared to participants not using Financial Engines, within the first year of using Financial Engines’ services users were:

– 27% more likely to have increased their plan contribution rate
– Two and a half times more likely to have improved their retirement income score
– Five times more likely to have improved their risk and diversification score

“American workers need to make the most of their hard-earned money, and access to high-quality, independent financial advice better helps them reach their important financial life goals,” said Raffone. “For decades, Financial Engines has been squarely focused on bringing trusted help to more people. Expanding our services to employers of all sizes and broadening our advisory network gives more Americans the financial planning and investment advice they need and deserve.”

About Edelman Financial Engines

Since 1986, Edelman Financial Engines has been committed to always acting in the best interest of our clients.We were founded on the belief that all American investors – not just the wealthy – deserve access to personalized, comprehensive financial planning and investment advice. Today, we are America’s top independent financial planning and investment advisor, recognized by both InvestmentNews2 and Barron’s3with 180+ planner offices across the country and entrusted by more than 1.1 million clients to manage more than $181 billion in assets. Our unique approach to serving clients combines our advanced methodology and proprietary technology with the attention of a dedicated personal financial planner. Every client’s situation and goals are unique, and the powerful fusion of high-tech and high-touch allows Edelman Financial Engines to deliver the personal plan and financial confidence that everyone deserves.

©2019 Edelman Financial Engines, LLC. All advisory services provided by Financial Engines Advisors L.L.C. Financial Engines does not guarantee future results.


Amy Conley

1 The Cerulli Edge – U.S. Retirement Edition, Cerulli Associations, 1Q 2019, Issue #50.

2 Ranking and status for 2017. For independence methodology and ranking, see InvestmentNews Center (http://data.investmentnews.com/ria/).

3 The Top 40 Independent Advisory Firm Ranking issued by Barron’s is qualitative and quantitative, including assets managed, the size and experience of teams, and the regulatory records of the advisers and firms. Firms elect to participate, but do not pay to be included in the ranking. Investor returns/experience are not considered. 2018 ranking refers to Edelman Financial Services (EFS), which combined its advisory business in its entirety with Financial Engines Advisors L.L.C. (FEA) in November 2018. For the same survey, FEA received a precombination ranking of twelfth.