The Evolution of TBO Deals: Part II

In my blog earlier this week, I outlined four approaches that have led to the creation of TBO deals. Let’s take a look at some examples for each approach. As you read through, note the aspects that apply to the evolution of any HRO deal and client relationship.

The traditional big bang approach: Approximately 15 years ago, Aon Hewitt was awarded a TBO contract by 3M that includes defined benefit (DB), defined contribution (DC), and retiree health and welfare (H&W) administration services. Recently, the TBO contract was expanded to include H&W administration for active employees and its retiree healthcare exchange services. In total, Aon Hewitt serves 80,000 active employees (30,000 in the U.S. and 50,000 internationally) and >25,000 retirees.

The big bang approach version 2.0: An example of this approach is Mercer’s TBO contract with an unnamed automobile manufacturer. Mercer had a long-term relationship with this client for retirement, health and benefits (H&B), and communication consulting services. This client has five locations in the U.S. that have separate benefit systems for its ~25,000 employees. The majority of its pension and H&B plans were administered in-house, while some were outsourced. Mercer was subsequently awarded the TBO contract to streamline operations and provide a consistent employee experience throughout the company.

The mass consolidation approach: Until November 2010, Office Depot relied on three different service providers: Vanguard for 401(k) and deferred compensation plans; NorthgateArinso — as a result of the Convergys acquisition — for H&W administration; and Morgan Stanley for stock-plan administration. Fidelity was consequently awarded this TBO contract and is serving 17,000 participants for retirement savings plans and 20,000 participants for H&W services.

The step-up approach: A recent example of this type is Towers Watson’s contract with The Dow Chemical Company. Towers Watson began administering Dow’s DB plan ten years ago. In 2009, after Dow acquired ROHM and Haas, it began to administer H&W services for ROHM and Haas’ ~12,000 employees and retirees. As of February 2012, Towers Watson will be administering H&W services including annual enrollment for 66,000 participants at Dow.

The demand for TBO services will continue and will likely take the shape of the latter two approaches discussed above. The overarching lesson is that HRO service providers can end up with a TBO or MPHRO deal with long-term growth from multiple starting points.

Amy L. Gurchensky, Research Analyst, HRO, NelsonHall

Interested in reading the latest HRO news from NelsonHall? Subscribe to our newsletter by emailing amy.gurchensky@nelson-hall.com with “HRO Insight” as the subject.

 

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