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The Principal Receives High Satisfaction Scores from Transitioning Clients

Personnel viewed as a strength in Chatham Partners survey

May 7, 2010 (Des Moines, IA) - Retirement plan clients transitioning their plans from other firms gave high marks to the Principal Financial Group® for satisfaction with all aspects of the conversion experience, according to a recent survey by Chatham Partners.

"I'm continually impressed by how The Principal® focuses and executes on the core components of a successful new client implementation: communicate how the process is going to work, manage the process and train the plan sponsor," said Joshua Dietch, managing director of Chatham Partners, a leading independent market research firm that focuses on the financial services industry. "When you do those things well, great results are the outcome."

Clients most frequently cited the following areas in which The Principal excelled during the transition process, consistently exceeding the benchmark in:

  • Personnel and service – responsive, strong product knowledge, attention to detail
  • Communication and status updates – clear articulation of progress, informative weekly conference calls, up-to-date timeline
  • Project management – worked effectively with previous vendors, demonstrated flexibility, excellent grasp of compliance issues

Principal Total Retirement SuiteSM clients, or clients with multiple retirement plan types, reported even greater levels of overall satisfaction with their transition experience.

"During the conversion process, personnel from The Principal excelled in their attention to detail and desire for accuracy while creating a true partnership with us. They went above and beyond," said Donna Fellinger, human resources administrator, Appraisal Institute.

"As an advisor, it is critical that we work with a plan provider that is able to handle the inevitable curveballs that get thrown at us during a plan conversion," said Chuck Williams, managing director of Sheridan Road Financial, a member firm of NRP Financial, Inc. "Throughout the Appraisal Institute transition and others, The Principal has consistently exceeded our expectations."

The Chatham Partners survey solicited feedback from defined contribution and defined benefit retirement plan clients on their conversion experience with The Principal. The firm surveyed two client segments: small to mid-sized plan sponsors with $5 million to $50 million in retirement plan assets and large plan sponsors with $50 million or more in plan assets.

"Understanding the unique needs of the plan sponsor and financial professional is the first key to success," said Jason Neal, assistant director of client relations at The Principal. "We view the transition as a team effort, working with the client and the financial professional every step of the way."

About Chatham Partners

Chatham Partners is a market research and consulting firm specializing in assisting financial service firms maximize the value of future, current and past customer and intermediary seller relationships through conducting customized win/loss, customer satisfaction, departed client and intermediary studies. For additional information, visit

About the Principal Financial Group

The Principal Financial Group® (The Principal®)[1] is a leader in offering businesses, individuals and institutional clients a wide range of financial products and services, including retirement and investment services, life and health insurance, and banking through its diverse family of financial services companies. A member of the Fortune 500, the Principal Financial Group has $284.7 billion in assets under management[2] and serves some 18.9 million customers worldwide from offices in Asia, Australia, Europe, Latin America and the United States. Principal Financial Group, Inc. is traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol PFG. For more information, visit

Insurance products and plan administrative services are provided by Principal Life Insurance Company, a member of the Principal Financial Group® (The Principal®), Des Moines, IA 50392.

Chatham Partners is not an affiliate of any member company of the Principal Financial Group.


The Principal Financial Group and The Principal are registered service marks of Principal Financial Services, Inc., a member of the Principal Financial Group.
As of December 31, 2009.

Call 515.246.4907 or see the full Media Relations contact list.

Call 515.246.4907 or see the full Media Relations contact list.

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