The Norman Transcript

December 14, 2012

Survey says retired teachers generally happy with system

Transcript Staff
The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — The Oklahoma Teachers Retirement System have announced the results of a recent survey of its almost 4,000 active and retired members.

Results indicated nine out of 10 retired OTRS clients (89 percent) and a majority of active OTRS clients (60 percent) were satisfied with the customer service they receive from the agency.

In addition to gauging feedback and client satisfaction, OTRS conducted the survey with a goal of determining levels of satisfaction, rates of technology use, and client’s likelihood to use a potential OTRS online platform.

“We believe our clients’ opinions and suggestions are important because they really do influence the way we conduct business, improve our services and relationships with our clients, and plan for the future,” said James Wilbanks, OTRS Executive Director.

While the majority of active members say they are satisfied with OTRS overall and only a small portion of OTRS members say they are unsatisfied, one-third of active members are on the fence and say they are neither satisfied nor unsatisfied.

One of the most surprising and encouraging findings from the survey is the fact that OTRS clients who say they’ve contacted OTRS in the past year are more satisfied with OTRS overall than those who haven’t contacted OTRS in the past year. 

Nearly 8 in 10 active OTRS members (78 percent) who have contacted OTRS in the past year say they are satisfied, either somewhat or very, with OTRS overall.

“This is significant,” said Daniel Ward, VP of Marketing Research at Koch Communications. “With most organizations, the folks who’ve needed to initiate contact are usually not as satisfied with the organization as those who had no need to contact.  This shows that clients who contact OTRS are being treated very well.”

Key Findings

· Nearly 8 in 10 Active OTRS Members (78 percent) who have contacted OTRS in the past year say they are satisfied, either somewhat or very, with OTRS overall.

· Half of Active OTRS Members (52 percent) who have not contacted OTRS in the past year say they are satisfied, either somewhat or very, with OTRS overall.

· Ninety-eight percent (98 percent) of Retired OTRS Members say they’ve never had an issue with late payments.

· Active and Retired Members who currently use some form of technology for retirement related tasks are much more likely to use an OTRS online interface than those who currently do not use some form of technology for retirement related tasks.

· Eighty-seven percent (87%) of Active Members say they make contributions to a retirement account/plan other than OTRS.

Wilbanks says the survey also included some surprises such as nearly thirty-eight percent of Active OTRS members say they don’t know the retirement eligibility standards (Rule of 80, Rule of 90etc.) associated with the plan they’re enrolled in, and one in three Active Members is unsure about whether or not their account is vested with OTRS.  “This tells us we need to do a little more work to educate our clients about the different retirement laws that impact them and their retirement income,” said Wilbanks.

The OTRS is a state agency that administers retirement assets and provides income security through a monthly retirement benefit payable to its clients, who are educators and employees of Oklahoma’s public education institutions and agencies.

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