3 Ways to Catch Up on Your Retirement Savings

Move closer to goals with special contribution limits and expert advice

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Eileen WIlliams
Duke Regional Hospital's Eileen Williams has been able to catch up with her retirement savings with Duke's plan. Photo by Stephen Schramm.

Duke’s retirement plans help employees save for and secure their future. The Faculty and Staff Retirement Plan allows all employees to save for retirement and provides a Duke contribution to eligible salaried or monthly paid staff and faculty. The Employees’ Retirement Plan (ERP) is a pension plan paid for entirely by Duke for hourly or bi-weekly paid staff.

In the 2021-22 fiscal year, Duke contributed a combined $224.7 million to both retirement plans.

“The Duke contributions are significant, but a big part of your retirement comfort is going to depend on you saving to whatever extent you can,” said Johanna Zawada, associate director of Benefits for Duke Human Resources.

As you save for your future, here are three things to keep in mind.

Enroll and Contribute

Through payroll deduction, all Duke employees, whether paid monthly or hourly, can contribute anywhere from 1-to-80 percent of each paycheck to the Faculty and Staff Retirement Plan account.

Experts suggest contributing a portion of your pay – starting with at least 3 percent each pay period – and increasing the amount each year to roughly 15 percent or more each pay period, if possible.

Duke contributes to the Faculty and Staff Retirement Plan for all eligible salaried or monthly paid employees regardless of whether they contribute on their own. Roughly 27 percent of eligible salaried or monthly-paid employees are not contributing to their account.

“Your own savings, to supplement Duke’s contribution, will help you meet your retirement goals,” Zawada said.


Internal Revenue Service rules for 2023 state the maximum annual contribution amount allowed to a 403(b) account – including both pre-tax and Roth contributions – is $22,500. For those over 50, the IRS maximum allowed 403(b) contribution jumps to $30,000 per year.

Employees with 15 years of service at Duke may contribute another $3,000 per year to their 403(b) account provided they meet certain requirements. Call the Human Resources Information Center at (919)-684-5600 to learn more.

Consult Experts

Get complimentary guidance from experts at Fidelity, the primary record keeper of Duke’s retirement accounts, with webinars and one-on-one consultations about investment strategies and more.

“Let’s put a plan together,” said Yvette Mills, Fidelity’s workplace financial consultant. “Now is the time to do what needs to be done.”

Visit fidelity.com/duke to schedule a consultation.

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