Invesco’s new research explores plan sponsor and plan member preferences for turning DC savings into income in retirement.

Invesco’s 2022 Retirement Income Study reflects on the evolving retirement industry today as it faces the pressing need to help plan members turn their DC plan savings into long-term retirement income.

To help plan sponsors navigate the shift from savings to decumulation benefits for their respective defined contribution (DC) plans, we explored how plan members think about retirement income in general, what type of in-plan solutions may be most attractive to them (and why), and which resources would best resonate across a wide range of employee demographics. We also examined how plan member and plan sponsor mindsets differed at times to see how best to bridge the (savings to income) gap moving forward.

Plan members expect their DC plan will be their largest retirement income source, eclipsing Social Security, personal savings, and other investments. And most feared outliving their retirement savings by spending too much, too soon, and were worried they would run out of money in retirement. Few plan members were very confident they could create a retirement income strategy on their own. They want and need help from their employers.

Plan members also wanted their employers to provide specific income-generating investments, earlier and more frequent communication, and resources to help make their long-term retirement income plan a reality.

Understandably, sponsors have been cautious and slow to adopt new retirement income solutions, wanting more information and guidance. Yet almost all plan members would view their employer favorably if they added specific retirement income solutions to the plan.

However, most plan sponsors recognized the importance of helping plan members ease the transition from saving for retirement to generating income post-retirement, first, by supporting and encouraging plan members to keep their assets in the DC plan and second, by offering retirement income solutions within the investment menu and offering flexible distribution options.

The majority of plan members surveyed wanted their employers to start the retirement income conversation with them earlier (at hire or when they joined the plan) and continue the dialogue more frequently (annually at open enrollment).

Due to the global turmoil over the last few years, there’s been a shift in how employees define retirement and how best they can prepare both mentally and financially. We found there’s an opportunity to provide plan members with retirement income-specific planning tools, investments, distribution options, and communications designed to help.

To read the full study, visit

About the study: Invesco teamed up with Greenwald Research to conduct the research from March 2021 through April 2022. The extensive study spanned online surveys of 100 plan sponsors and over 1,000 participants (all working for large US organizations with 5,000 or more employees), 12 participant focus groups, and 18 in-depth interviews with plan sponsors and consultants. Invesco is not affiliated with Greenwald Research.

 Disclaimer: The study was prepared based on US investor data and may contain information that may be materially different for Canadian investors. These differences may affect suitability for Canadian investors, and this session should not be relied upon by Canadians in making any investment decisions. In Canada, this session is restricted to accredited investors as defined by National Instrument 45-106. The material used is for informational purposes only and may not be distributed or shared with others.

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