In all defined contribution (DC) plans, some functions are delegated to outside service providers, if only record keeping and some investment management. Before undertaking a formal program of outsourcing fiduciary responsibility, however, a sponsor will want to engage in an explicit decision-making process to determine which functions to outsource and which to retain control over. Generally, the outsourcing decision will begin with an inventory of the relevant plan responsibilities, functions, and a determination of the sponsor’s plan objectives and resources.

This paper explores how DC plan sponsors should think about what functions to outsource and provides a client case study challenge, including Russell Investments’ solution and outcome.

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