Federal employees should keep their eyes fixed on the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) over the next year.
The agency in charge of the plan is in the middle of an extensive modernization project that will change the back-end technologies that run and protect the TSP.
These changes will add new features that will benefit TSP participants.
Employees and contractors involved in the project’s technical components call it “Converge.”
Participants will remember “Converge” as the project that eventually delivered them a new TSP mobile app, new security functions, a mutual fund window, and a few more things that most people are familiar with from online banking.
Many of these improvements have been in the works for years, especially the technical stuff on the backend. However, the Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board (FRTIB) has stated that participant feedback is influencing the direction in which some of the new features are being implemented.
According to a recent study of TSP users, 57% of those under the age of 40 prefer a mobile app to access the TSP. 24% of those over 40 also agreed to this.
Participants will be able to log in to their accounts and connect with the TSP via their online accounts, email, and phone line. Starting next summer, they’ll also have access to a new TSP mobile app with a chat feature and an AI-powered virtual assistant.
The chat option will be administered by live TSP customer care professionals, who will be able to transfer participants to other people who can help with more specific inquiries or issues over the phone.
More online forms and electronic signatures will also be added to the TSP, making it easier for participants to manage their money and engage with the plan.
Participants will also be able to scan checks into the TSP using a digital scanner, similar to what most banks offer.
According to the TSP board, there’s also an impending mutual fund window opening somewhere in the summer. The plan’s five core elements will allow participants to access tens of thousands of dollars that would otherwise be unavailable.
The mutual fund window is currently being designed by the administrators. But according to Nohe, it will also have a search engine that will let people filter through the funds and look at their choices based on things that are important to them.
Participants with mutual fund window questions will be able to contact a dedicated contact center, which will be set up as part of the plan.
Once players join the window, there will be no trade limits, although some individual funds may have their own, according to Nohe.
Both participants and members of Congress are interested in the mutual fund window. The TSP will provide further details in the next few months.
Participants will see new security measures, as well as the mobile app and mutual fund window.
For example, participants may receive more prompts for a one-time password (OTP) to perform higher-risk online transactions. More fraud detection and prevention technologies will be added to the online experience as part of the strategy. Participants will also be able to access their TSP accounts using biometric data such as face recognition or fingerprints.
Participants will begin to see these changes this summer, according to the FRTIB. Meanwhile, the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) will start engaging with its members soon to prepare them for the changes.
Yes, participants will be required to prepare actively.
The most important thing to remember is that participants will need to create new log-in credentials to access their online accounts. They’ll need to create a new login, password, and multi-factor authentication to access their accounts.
Those with several TSP accounts, such as a military or a civilian retirement account, will just need to create one new credential to gain access to all of them, according to Nohe.
Before the big launch, there will be a brief blackout period during which participants will be unable to access their accounts or carry out specific transactions for a limited time.
Once again, the TSP is still ironing out the details. However, keep an eye out for more information on the plan itself.
After entering the financial services industry in 1994, it was a desire to guide people towards their financial independence that drove Aaron to start Steele Capital Management in 2013. Armed with an extensive background in financial planning and commercial banking coupled with a sincere passion for helping people, Aaron has the expertise and affinity for serving the unique needs of those in transition. Clients benefit from his objective financial solutions and education aligned solely with
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Born in Olympia, Washington, Aaron spent much of his childhood in Denver, Colorado. An area outside of Phoenix, Arizona, known as the East Valley, occupies a special place in Aaron’s heart. It is where he graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration, started a family, and advanced his professional career.
Having now returned to his hometown of Olympia, and with the days of coaching his sons football and baseball teams behind him, he now has time to pursue his civic passions. Aaron is proud to serve on the Board of Regents Leadership for Thurston County as the Secretary and Treasurer for the Morningside area. His past affiliations include the West Olympia Rotary and has served on various committees for organizations throughout his community.
Aaron and his beautiful wife, Holly, a Registered Nurse, consider their greatest accomplishment having raised Thomas and Tate, their two intelligent and motivated sons. Their oldest son Tate is following in his father’s entrepreneurial footsteps and currently attends the Carson College of Business at Washington State University. Their beloved youngest son, Thomas, is a student at Olympia High School.
Focused on helping veterans and their families navigate the maze of long-term care solutions, Aaron specializes in customized strategies to avoid the financial crisis that care related expenses can create. Experience has shown him that many seniors are not prepared for the economic transition that takes place as they reach an advanced age.
With support from the American Academy of Benefit Planners – an organization with expertise and resources on the intricacies of government benefits – he helps clients close the gap between the cost of care and their income while protecting their assets from depletion.
Aaron can help you and your family to create, preserve and protect your legacy.
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