As an AT&T employee, you have access to a range of exceptional workplace and retirement benefits that can serve as powerful tools for wealth-building and securing a comfortable retirement. Yet, many employees might not be taking full advantage of them.
Advance Capital Management has been serving AT&T employees and retirees since 1986. So, we have a deep understanding of AT&T’s benefits and how they can make a difference in your financial future.
Consider this CNBC article profiling an AT&T engineer who spent half a century with the company, although he didn’t have a bachelor’s degree. Having held about eight roles during his tenure, he climbed the corporate ladder, acquiring knowledge and skills primarily through on-the-job training. While he built an impressive skill set, he has expressed a significant career regret: not utilizing AT&T’s robust education benefits to its full extent.
Drawing from his experience, let’s delve into some of the most lucrative AT&T benefits you might be overlooking:
You can greatly improve your financial security by increasing your income. One way to do that is by taking advantage of educational opportunities.
Eligible AT&T employees can receive up to $30,000 in tuition reimbursement. This offering can be a game-changer for those considering pursuing higher education, whether to shift careers or move into a better-paying job. AT&T has partnerships with renowned institutions like Notre Dame, University of Oklahoma, Champlain College, North Carolina A&T and more. This initiative removes a significant financial barrier that might deter many from pursuing further studies.
AT&T 401(k) plan with company match
Beyond the steady foundation provided by your AT&T pension, your 401(k) serves as a crucial asset for achieving your financial goals.
One of the standout features of AT&T's 401(k) plan is the company match. After one year with the company, AT&T matches 80% of your Basic contribution. (For managers, your Basic contribution is the first 6% of your salary. For most non-managers, it’s a dollar amount based on your banded pay.) That’s essentially free money toward your retirement.
And, if you make the full Basic contribution, you can save even more in the form of Supplementary contributions. If you're not contributing enough to get the full company match, you're leaving money on the table. Ensure you’re at least contributing the necessary amount to take full advantage of this benefit.
The IRS allows you to save only $22,500 per year, or $30,000 if you are age 50 or older (2023). However, most non-manager AT&T workers are also limited to a total contribution of no more than 30% of their pay. Learn more about how to get the most from your AT&T 401(k) here.
FREE GUIDE: Find out how to maximize your AT&T retirement benefits by downloading The AT&T Employee's Guide to Retirementhere.
Health savings accounts (HSAs) and flexible spending accounts (FSAs)
If you're enrolled in a high-deductible health plan (HDHP) through AT&T, you likely have access to an HSA. Contributions are made pre-tax, and the money grows tax-free if used for qualified medical expenses. AT&T employees who contribute to their HSA through payroll deductions may also be eligible for a company match. Over time, this can be a significant tax-advantaged savings tool, especially if you don’t use all your contributions each year.
Meanwhile, FSAs allow employees to set aside pre-tax money for out-of-pocket healthcare costs. While FSA contributions don’t roll over year-to-year like HSAs, they can provide valuable tax savings.
Maximizing your AT&T Pension Plan
Chances are, you have access to AT&T’s pension plan. But are you maximizing it?
Your pension value depends on factors like your salary, age and years of service. Generally, the longer you work at AT&T, the higher the potential pension benefits. Your pension will be negatively affected if you do not reach the age and service breakpoints (the modified rule of 75) for your employment position. Additionally, you may receive a reduced pension benefit if you take your benefit prior to age 55, unless you are a union employee with 30 or more years of service.
Therefore, familiarize yourself with key milestones or periods after which your pension benefits see significant jumps. Planning retirement around these milestones can optimize your pension payouts. Helping AT&T employees decide which pension is best is part of our retirement planning services as detailed on this page.
Take a comprehensive look at AT&T's pension plan here.
The bottom line
It’s essential to regularly review and adapt your strategies based on your life stage, financial goals and the benefits available to you. By leveraging these AT&T benefits effectively, you can build a prosperous financial future. Don’t just work for your benefits; make your benefits work for you!
Advance Capital Management is a fee-only RIA serving clients across the country. The Advance Capital Team includes financial advisers, investment managers, client service professionals and more -- all dedicated to helping people pursue their financial goals.