For years, our members have been asking for help setting up their retirement plans. This is because today, the government expects independent workers to assume their own financial security. Traditionally, 401(k) retirement plans have been attached to employers, leaving freelancers with few alternatives but to build their own economic security alone. Members have reported that with limited options, freelancers have had to pay high fees to brokers to set up comparable retirement savings plans and have struggled under expensive and inflexible plans that have been difficult to self-manage and have left little leeway for episodic income.

As a result, we have been working since 2006 to secure access for our members to the retirement savings options you need. In the process, we compiled a strong set of benefit experts and consultants to advise us, and we met with various established retirement planning administrators. We partnered with Milliman, a company with a history of working with unions and membership organizations. We also held a range of focus groups and surveys to determine what members want most in a savings plan, and we conducted research on behavioral economics to determine the barriers to saving and to develop strategies to help overcome those barriers and encourage long-term saving.

With all of this, the Freelancers Retirement Plan was created—for our members and out of our members’ needs. With no brokers or middlemen making a profit from the Freelancers Retirement Plan, we are passing those savings directly onto our members. During a time of widespread financial insecurity, now it is more important than ever to build your economic security and establish a long-term savings plan. However, you shouldn’t have to be responsible for your own economic security alone. This is one of the critical steps toward building economic security for the independent workforce.