Nearly half of Canadians do not have a retirement savings plan and a quarter have no savings at all. A Deloitte 2021 survey revealed that the two main reasons why people are not saving for retirement are an inability to afford it and a lack of knowledge of how to go about it.
In the nonprofit sector, almost one million workers — half the workers in the sector — do not have access to a workplace retirement plan. Without a workplace pension, the median retirement savings of households aged 55 to 64 is $3,000.
Recognizing the need and gap in the sector, a coalition of philanthropic funders — including Vancity, the Hamilton Community Foundation, Maytree, and Metcalf — came together to support Common Wealth Retirement to develop a retirement plan specifically catered to nonprofit workers and organizations.
The Common Good Plan launched in 2021 to provide an easy-to-use, affordable, and nationally portable workplace retirement savings plan for Canadian nonprofit workers. Designed as a group TFSA/RRSP, it is unique in the market because it focuses on the monthly income an individual requires in retirement, is designed with the needs of modest earners in mind, and offers significantly lower fees than traditional providers.
For many nonprofits — particularly smaller ones — that were previously unable to access high-quality workplace retirement plans, the Common Good Plan is now an option with no minimum headcount or minimum cash flow. Organizations can offer the plan to their employees, with the flexibility to provide a contribution match.
As members of the Common Good Plan, nonprofit workers can easily plan and track retirement savings on a digital platform, take advantage of fees that are 70% less than the typical RRSP plan, and move the plan with them as they change jobs.
Retirement security is a significant and growing issue, with three quarters of Canadians concerned about having enough money in retirement. The Common Good Plan addresses the two main reasons why people are not saving more by providing a low-cost option — along with a way for employers to contribute — and an easy-to-use platform to guide retirement planning.
Nearly 100 employers in all 10 provinces are now part of the Common Good Plan. Beyond offering nonprofit workers a path to retirement security, a workplace retirement plan also helps to attract and retain talent in the sector.
In May 2022, Metcalf joined the Common Good Plan as an employer to offer the plan to all staff. If you are a nonprofit organization interested in signing up for the Common Good Plan, you can visit their website to learn more.