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Welcoming Website
Northwest AGC Chapters’ new retirement plan site more user friendly, useful
By Rindi White

etirement planning can be confusing: Which plan is the best investment, which provides the least risk and the greatest reward? For many companies, the question is how to provide this benefit to a small pool of workers while remaining cost-effective.

Associated General Contractors, or AGC, of Alaska partners with the Northwest Chapters of AGC to offer a retirement plan to AGC members large and small. The idea of pooling with other companies to lower overhead and provide the kind of plan benefits that come with larger companies is good, but pension board members found the website for that plan was less useful and less inviting than Northwest Chapter members wanted. In fact, they worried it was a barrier to plan involvement—simply getting a quote was not possible through the site.

“The old one was extremely antiquated and difficult to maneuver through,” says AGC of Alaska Assistant Director Thea Scalise. “It was not easy to find information or understand how it could help companies.”

Last year, the board of trustees overseeing the plan agreed to hire a website designer to update the website and make it friendlier for users of all types.

The new site, designed by Philadelphia-based Impart Creative, went live June 24.

Wayne Hammon, chief executive officer of the Idaho AGC chapter, says making sure the plan website reflects AGC and its overall values was important. One of the first steps toward building the new website was agreeing on a common voice.

“It’s professional but not clinical. It’s inviting but not hokey. It’s sophisticated but it’s not complicated—which I think really reflects our membership. Getting a webpage that reflected that was really important,” Hammon says.

Dan Kruse, studio director for Impart Creative, says his company builds webpages in a similar way that construction companies build buildings: they start with a plan, create what amounts to a blueprint, go through the design process to get the look and feel the client wants, then work on the actual construction.

Mobile website
“Our process is really rooted in collaboration and communication. All of the steps involve many rounds of feedback with the many stakeholders on the team,” he says.

Kruse says in working with the Northwest AGC Chapters team, his company was able to obtain a clear vision of what was needed and carry that out.

Making it applicable to all users was important, Scalise says. The page is a portal for businesses that might be interested in joining the plan—that could be employees of a company seeking information to bring to their company leadership; human resources professionals within a company gathering information; or a company president researching before making a decision. But the same page is used by plan members: human resources professionals looking for data to provide employees, employees wanting to make changes within their account, and more. All of that is readily available, Hammon says. And getting a quote? It’s now as easy as answering four or five questions.

Kruse says, “We make sure we understand all those audiences upfront to make sure none of them get lost in the process.”

Hammon says since the new site has gone live, there has been an uptick in the number of AGC members taking part. That may be in part due to promotion; several Northwest AGC chapters have posted about the new website on social media and through other outreach methods. But having more members ultimately brings costs down for everyone, he says, so more members is good for everyone involved.

“By growing the plan, everybody benefits,” Hammon says.

Check the new site out at

Rindi White is the editor of The Alaska Contractor Magazine.