Your Duke Energy Benefits & Career: Financial Planning for Employees and Executives

Brian Thorp
Brian Thorp is the founder and CEO of Wealthtender and Editor-in-Chief. Prior to founding Wealthtender, Brian spent nearly 22 years in multiple leadership roles at Invesco. With over 25 years in the financial services industry, Brian is applying his experience and passion at Wealthtender to help more people enjoy life with less money stress.

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Do you work at Duke Energy? Get the resources you need and expert insights from financial professionals who specialize in helping Duke Energy employees make the most of their compensation package and benefits.

Whether you’re a new Duke Energy employee or you’ve moved up the ranks into a management or executive leadership role over a multi-year career, it’s important to make smart money moves with your income and employee benefits. For example:

✅ Do you know the right moves to make to get the greatest value from the Duke Energy benefits available to you?

✅If you’re thinking about leaving Duke Energy for another job or planning to retire from the company in a few years, are you taking the right steps today to ensure you will receive all of the compensation and benefits that you’ve earned?

Get the Most Value from Your Duke Energy Benefits and Compensation Package

Throughout the year, Duke Energy provides its employees and executives with updates about their benefits ranging from health insurance and health savings plans to retirement plans like a 401(k), deferred compensation plans, and stock options. While the company offers many useful resources and access to knowledgeable staff who can assist with questions, you’ll also find financial professionals not affiliated with Duke Energy who specialize in helping Duke Energy employees make the most of their income and benefits.

Whether you work in the Duke Energy headquarters in Charlotte, North Carolina, another office location around the country, or remotely from home, you may have questions about your compensation package and benefits better suited for a financial professional who can offer unbiased advice and guidance.

For example, sensitive topics like discussing the steps you should take before quitting your job at Duke Energy to work elsewhere, protecting yourself in advance of a corporate layoff, or deciding when you should plan to retire are all conversations that may be more comfortable with a trusted financial advisor.

Should you hire a Duke Energy specialist financial advisor or an advisor close to home?

You’ll likely find dozens of nearby financial advisors well-suited to help you reach your money goals with a personalized plan. But it may be more difficult to find a financial advisor who specializes in serving Duke Energy employees.

Fortunately, many financial advisors offer virtual services so you can meet online no matter where you (or they) live.

This means you can choose to hire a specialist financial advisor who lives hundreds of miles away if you decide their knowledge and experience working with Duke Energy employees is a better fit to help with your unique needs.

💡 In the Q&A below, you’ll gain insights from financial advisors who work with Duke Energy employees to help them make smart decisions to get the most value from their compensation and benefits, reduce their money stress, and prepare for a comfortable retirement.

🙋‍♀️ Do you have questions not yet answered? Use the form below to submit questions anonymously and watch this article for updates with answers to your questions. You can also reach out to the financial advisors below to set up an introductory call or contact them with your questions by email.

💸 Smart Money Insights for Duke Energy Employees & Executives

This page is organized into sections to help you quickly find the information you need and get answers to your questions:

  1. Q&A: Financial Planning Tips for Duke Energy Employees & Executives
  2. Get Answers to Your Questions About Your Duke Energy Benefits and Career
  3. Quick Facts & Resources for Duke Energy Employees
  4. Browse Related Articles

Q&A: Financial Planning Tips for Duke Energy Employees & Executives

Answers to Employee Questions with Laura Simpson, CFP®

Laura Simpson is a financial advisor with PAX Financial Group based in San Antonio, Texas who specializes in offering financial planning services to Duke Energy employees. Laura helps her clients get the most value from their Duke Energy benefits and compensation package so they can enjoy life and feel confident about their financial future.

Q: As a financial advisor with experience helping Duke Energy employees save for their retirement, how do you help them make the most of their employee benefits?

Laura: One of the first topics of conversation with any employee is their current financial picture, including their goals and dreams, short-term and long-term. Whether a front-line employee, senior executive, or mid-level leader, I tailor the depth and breadth of discussion to the level of understanding and interest of the employee.

I always address the power of saving and the leverage of time for the simple reason, Duke Energy provides their employees with generous benefits. Their health and retirement benefits are very attractive. With a disciplined approach over time, maximizing contribution limits and company matching, employees can quickly build wealth.

Q: When you first speak with a Duke Energy employee, what questions do you like to ask to better understand their unique circumstances and determine how you can best help them achieve their goals?

Laura: Good financial planning and advice are built on good discovery. Questioning and listening are critical components of good discovery. My questioning style is conversational. A conversation that explores the goals, dreams, and family dynamics is the cornerstone for designing a successful financial plan.

Typically, it takes more than one conversation to discover what is most important to employees. And gaining that depth of understanding and insight requires trust, which is earned.

Q: Is there a particular benefit available to Duke Energy employees you feel isn’t as well utilized or understood by employees as it should be?

Laura: Retirement plan “matching” benefits and health plan benefits are two of the most misunderstood benefits. I encourage employees to at least contribute enough into the retirement plan, so they receive all the “match” benefit offered by Duke Energy. That is free money for the employee.

With health benefits, I encourage employees to talk with their Benefits team at Duke Energy early in the planning process for retirement. Also, if the employee leaves Duke Energy before retiring, they need to know the details of their options. Some options can be impacted by age, vesting requirements, or years of service.

One other benefit that Duke Employees underutilize is the Roth 401k. Many employees have been with Duke for many years and do not understand the advantages of contributing to the Roth bucket and that they can contribute all or part of their 401k contributions to the Roth 401k. Having multiple accounts with different tax benefits allows for flexibility with tax strategies in retirement.

Q: Beyond Duke Energy employee benefits for retirement savings, are there other types of benefits offered by the company that you find valuable to discuss with your clients?

Laura: Duke Energy offers an HSA eligible Health plan and will contribute a seed contribution of $850 for Individuals or $1,700 for an individual plus dependent prorated based on the hire date. An HSA account can later be used to help with expenses in retirement if the account continues to grow over the years.

They also offer a Health Care Spending Account and Dependent Care Spending Account. These types of accounts allow for tax savings when you plan on spending money on childcare and/or out of pocket medical expenses during the year. These types of accounts need to be evaluated every year.

Also, it is important to note that Duke Energy offers discounts on the insurance premiums for tobacco-free covered persons.

Q: For Duke Energy employees thinking about leaving the company to accept a job elsewhere, what actions do you recommend they take before resigning and shortly thereafter?

Laura: Sometimes an employee has no control over when they resign. It may be due to health issues, family needs, or other factors beyond their control. When a resignation is in the employee’s control, it is important they have prepared for this event by planning in advance, so all the benefits are maximized. Vesting schedules, age of employee, years of service and plan participation are all possible triggers for receiving or losing benefits. There may be other triggers.

That is why I recommend an employee have a review with their benefits team at Duke Energy when they enter the 5-year window leading up to retirement. When it is a resignation, the sooner the employee can learn all the triggers for their benefits the more likely they will not leave any benefits behind.

Get to Know Laura Simpson, Financial Advisor for Duke Energy Employees:

View Laura’s profile page on Wealthtender or visit her website to learn more.

Q: For Duke Energy employees approaching retirement age, how do you recommend they prepare to make the transition from living off their salary to relying upon other sources of income?

Laura: I spend time working with my clients to come up with an idea of what they really want this next phase of their life to look like. This may include increased travel or expenditures on cars or home improvements every so many years during retirement.

I have my clients complete a Cashflow Worksheet which outlines their projected expenses in retirement. Their expenses are broken down to “Needs” and “Wants”. My goal is that their “Needs Expenses” are covered by Guaranteed Income Sources and that their “Wants Expenses/Discretionary Expenses” are covered by non-guaranteed sources. This strategy has proven to provide peace to my clients in retirement.

I show my clients the various income sources that will be available to them such as Pension benefits, Social Security Income as well as their investments. Together we design a withdrawal strategy that optimizes their income during various market cycles and economic downturns.

Q: For Duke Energy employees who have managed their finances on their own to this point, what would you suggest they consider to help them decide if they should begin working with a financial advisor at this stage in their lives?

Laura: The two most common considerations for the do-it-yourself investor are very basic. The first is for employees who are married. If the employee dies, will their spouse want to manage the investments? If the answer is no, then the employee can split the assets into two accounts. The employee continues to manage one account while starting to work with an advisor that is liked by both the employee and their spouse.

The second consideration is a simple question. Is this how the employee wants to spend a portion, usually a big portion, of their time in retirement? When they are traveling, with family or friends, in remote areas, on the golf course or at the beach, will they be able to relax and enjoy life while still managing their investments.

Financial planning and the management of an investment portfolio requires time…sometimes a lot of time.

Q: What are some of the unique financial planning challenges you commonly see among your clients who are Duke Energy employees and how do you help them overcome these obstacles?

Laura: The financial planning challenge that is most harmful is not unique to Duke Energy employees. Unfortunately, it is quite common. The “challenge” is one topic with two parts. The topic is planning. People either wait too long to start or do not plan at all.

The good news is I can help with both situations. But the employee must ask! How I help them is simple. We do a financial plan…together. It is never too late to start! And what I start with a client, we finish together.

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Quick Facts & Resources for Duke Energy Employees

Duke Energy Quick Facts & ResourcesDetails / Useful Links
Duke Energy Corporate Headquarters Address550 S Tryon St, Charlotte, NC 28202 (📍 Google Maps)
Overview of Duke Energy Benefitswww.duke-energy.com/our-company/careers/benefits
How much do Duke Energy employees Make?View Duke Energy Salary Research on Glassdoor
How many people work for Duke Energy?Duke Energy has over 28,000 employees worldwide (Source: Duke Energy)
What is the ticker symbol for Duke Energy stock?The Duke Energy ticker symbol is DUK.

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About the Author
Brian Thorp, Founder and CEO of Wealthtender profile picture

Brian Thorp

Founder and CEO, Wealthtender

Brian and his wife live in Texas, enjoying the diversity of Houston and the vibrancy of Austin.

With over 25 years in the financial services industry, Brian is applying his experience and passion at Wealthtender to help more people enjoy life with less money stress.

Connect with Brian on LinkedIn

To make Wealthtender free for readers, we earn money from advertisers, including financial professionals and firms that pay to be featured. This creates a conflict of interest when we favor their promotion over others. Learn more. Wealthtender is not a client of these financial services providers.
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