Nearly 3000 responded to Canstar’s survey, which asked New Zealanders to rate their satisfaction level with their KiwiSaver.
The survey identified the key drivers of satisfaction for members were value for money, investment returns and customer service.
“Recent media attention focussed on the importance of KiwiSaver towards retirement or even a first home has meant more New Zealanders are conscious of maximising their KiwiSaver to its full potential,” says Jose George, general manager of Canstar New Zealand.
“Simplicity’s performance in our research when compared with other KiwiSaver providers, shows that it’s excelling in terms of customer satisfaction in this increasingly competitive and high-profile field.”
Canstar’s research showed that 51% of the survey respondents check their KiwiSaver balance at least once a month, with 44% noting that word of mouth from friends and family has encouraged them to change KiwiSaver providers.
52% of the survey respondents also said that they have read but only understand some KiwiSaver communications, illustrating the importance of clear communication by KiwiSaver providers.
“As the only KiwiSaver provider in a field of 13 to receive a possible 5-stars for overall customer satisfaction, Simplicity has shown strong performance in all key drivers towards high overall customer satisfaction,” says Mr George.
KiwiSaver Funds: Which fund is best for me?
After reading about Canstar’s Customers Satisfaction Award Winner for KiwiSaver providers, you may be wondering what the best performing KiwiSaver fund is. However, there’s no one KiwiSaver that suits everyone.
The fund best suited to you will depend on a number of things; including the risk you’re willing to take and when you intend to use your KiwiSaver funds (buying your first home versus retirement).
KiwiSaver can be broadly split into multiple different fund profiles, based on growth asset allocation. Each fund invests a certain per cent into growth assets such as shares and property, while the remaining per cent is invested in income assets such as cash and bonds.
In general, a good rule of thumb is to opt for a fund with a lower growth asset percentage if you are planning on using your KiwiSaver funds in the near future. This is because funds that have a higher growth asset percentage usually offer higher returns over a longer period of time, but carry a higher risk.
Here are some general KiwiSaver fund type profiles, however, funds do vary between providers:
- Cash Profile: 0% to 9.9% in growth assets. This type of fund is low risk and invests money in bank deposits as well as additional fixed interest investments. It is suitable for those seeking a short-term investment.
- Conservative Profile: 10% to 34.9% in growth assets. A low-to-medium risk conservative fund invests in both bank deposits and other fixed interest investments, as well as growth assets such as property and shares. A conservative fund is most suited to those seeking a short-to-medium investment, and may withdraw funds in the next two to six years.
- Balanced Profile: 35% to 62.9% in growth assets. A balanced fund is medium risk and classified as a medium-to-long term investment, designed for those investors looking to withdraw funds in the next five to twelve years.
- Growth Profile: 63% to 89.9% in growth assets. As it’s a long-term investment, this type of fund is a medium-to-high risk and you should only opt for this fund type if you’re planning on withdrawing in more than ten years.
- Aggressive Profile: 90% to 100% in growth assets. Being a high-risk fund, this is best suited for long-term KiwiSaver investors. Because it carries a high level of risk, investors should be willing to see dips and peaks in investment funds, with the intention of withdrawing when the investment reaches a peak return.
Read more in Canstar’s article on how to choose a KiwiSaver fund suitable for you.