In the course of performing plan administration in PensionPro, there are times—especially during Annual Administration—where Projects are launched across many Plans, and need to be completed by a certain deadline. With so many Tasks bouncing from Employee to Employee, it can be immensely helpful to be able to step back and take a high-level view at these Projects, quickly determining how many Projects have reached which milestones, and spotting potential issues before they become real problems. Although some tracking can be accomplished using Worktrays or Reporting, PensionPro provides a better solution: Events. The goal of this article is to provide an introduction to Events, explain how they work, and discuss what considerations must be made when using them for the first time.
This article assumes that the reader is already familiar with creating and using Projects in PensionPro. If this is not the case, consider starting with with Projects: An Overview.
Tier Availability: Business
Table of Contents
It's nearly time to start Annual Administration again, and this year, the firm decides it would be useful to track the Data Collection process in PensionPro. Specifically, the firm wants to know:
- The number of Projects that still need a Census Request to be sent out
- The number of Projects for which Data Collection has not yet been completed
The firm creates two Events called Data Request Invitation Sent and Data Request Complete. Then, the Annual Administration Project Template is edited, and the first and last Data Collection Tasks (Census Request Sent and Final Approval) are tagged with these Events.
When one of the firm's employees opens Event Management, both the Data Request Invitation Sent and Data Request Complete Events will be shown. For each Event, the employee can review the number of Projects that should be launched, as well as the number of Projects that have or have not completed the Task connected to the Event.
As they are reviewing this information, the Employee can jump to any Plan or Project to examine it in greater detail.
This is a very basic example, but it should highlight some of the concepts that are key to understanding Events. To summarize: Events allow a firm to track a large number of Projects as they reach one or more milestones on the path to completion.
Before an Event can be added to a Project Template, it needs to be created. This is where Event Configurations come in. Each Event Configuration defines an Event, including its name and behavior.
There are many options that can be used to refine an Event Configuration. Most of these settings are used by Event Management to determine which Plans are expected to utilize the Event; this will be discussed further later on in this article.
As shown in the Example Scenario, an Event is used to mark an important Task in order to more easily track which Projects have completed that step, and which have not. Data Request Invitation Sent and Data Request Complete are two suggested Events for use alongside Data Collection on PlanSponsorLink, but Events can be created for any Project milestone. Examples of other Events may include:
- Compliance Testing Complete
- Form 5500 Complete
- Form 5500 Filed
- Billing Sent
- Billing Paid
Again, Events are most effective when used with Projects launched in batches. These could be yearly Projects to meet annual Plan requirements (e.g., Annual Administration), or one-off Projects that need to be performed once for a large number of Plans (such as document restatements).
Once an Event Configuration is created, it can be added to a Task in a Project Template. After Projects are launched from that Template, Event Management is used to track the Event.
Event Configurations are used to define Events; Event Management is where these Configurations are put into action by tracking the created Events.
For each Event, Event Management will track the following pieces of information:
- Eligible Plans: Based on a combination of criteria established during Event Configuration (such as Plan Type and Period End date), PensionPro will automatically determine the number of Plans that are expected to utilize the Event via an applicable Project.
- Projects: The number of applicable Projects that have been launched, and which use the Event. Additionally, PensionPro will identify issues where Plan, Project, and/or Event settings don't match what is expected based on the Event Configuration.
- Tasks Completed: The number of Projects for which the Event milestone Task has been completed.
- Tasks Remaining: The number of Projects for which the Event milestone Task has not been completed.
It doesn't make sense to group Projects from multiple periods (such as different Plan Years) into the same Event. For this reason, PensionPro allows Event Configurations to be added to Event Management multiple times with different Period End dates. This helps group similar batches of Projects based on dates.
In addition to the Event counts mentioned above, Event Management also provides the ability to drill down into these counts to provide more at-a-glance information about the Plans and Projects contained within, such as a list of Plans included with an Event, whether or not a Plan Cycle record has been created for a Plan, or the completion percentage of the Task associated with the Event. Plan and Project names are hyperlinked, providing a quick means of jumping straight to these items. On top of that, these drill-down views—as well as the entirely of Event Management—are built into PensionPro's view grid, which means that the information displayed can be exported at any time.
PensionPro also provides built-in business intelligence reporting on Events, with visuals breaking down the timeline of upcoming Events, average Event completion time, current vs. past due Tasks and Projects, and Employee metrics.