‘My Retirement Member App’ launched

By Janice Roberts
Sanlam Umbrella Fund introduces the My Retirement Member App

Irlon Terblanche, CEO of the Sanlam Umbrella Fund, My Retirement Member App

In a bid to ensure better retirement outcomes for its fund members, the Sanlam Umbrella Fund has launched a member app. The first major commercial umbrella fund to create such functionality, Sanlam’s ‘My Retirement Member App’ will go a long way towards helping its members be more hands-on with their retirement savings, says Irlon Terblanche, CEO of the Sanlam Umbrella Fund.

“Year after year, we see shocking statistics in the Sanlam BENCHMARK Survey. Retirees can’t make ends meet, and the current workforce doesn’t reinvest retirement monies when changing jobs. Too often, the same complaint comes up: ‘The communication from our fund is poor. We don’t really know where our savings stand.”

He said the fact that retirement fund members are not making adequate provision for retirement can largely be attributed to two factors:  members are generally apathetic towards retirement and other employee benefit issues; and they possess low levels of financial knowledge when it comes to making informed decisions about retirement.

This app is all about empowering members – of all ages, not only the highly tech-savvy millennial – to have a very strong handle on their retirement savings. There will no longer be the need to wait for an annual benefit statement or make contact with the fund for information. It will be at the member’s fingertips at all times. The functionality includes:

  • A view of current retirement savings and benefits (including risk and insured benefits)
  • A view of where the money is being invested monthly and how much
  • Easy access to the fund performance fact sheets
  • Easy access to important contacts and links
  • Easy access to educational content that will help ensure a good retirement outcome
  • A retirement calculator giving insights into how well the member is doing in saving towards retirement.

Members can also:

  • Email their HR rep should any of their personal info need updating.
  • Request an additional voluntary contribution to boost retirement savings – (as of 1 March 2016, you can get a tax deduction of  27.5% of your taxable income on contributions to all types of retirement funds, regardless of your employer’s fund rules).

The app forms part of a larger digital project underway from the Sanlam Umbrella Fund which is aimed at improving retirement outcomes. Other elements include ‘Retire-mate’, a ground-breaking new online and telephonic retirement planning service for fund members which features an online self-help capability packed with information for every step of the retirement savings journey, backed by telephonic support from a financial counsellor.

The app is available for download on GooglePlay and the Apple App Store, just search ‘Sanlam My Retirement’.

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