Whether it's because they're looking to save on fees or because they don't like their advisor's fashion sense, plan sponsors searching for a new advisor today have no shortage of options, and that can be a problem. 

"There are so many advisors to plan sponsors these days, how can plan sponsors realistically be expected to make the right choice?" asks Trisha Brambly, founder of a New Hope, Pennsylvania, firm that helps employers do just that.

According to Fidelity, 84 percent of sponsors relied on advisors in 2013, up 9 percent from the previous year. Still, about 175,000 defined contribution plans do not use an advisory firm, Brambly says. Moreover, about 17 percent of plans with assets over $50 million don't have an advisory firm in place. 

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Nick Thornton

Nick Thornton is a financial writer covering retirement and health care issues for BenefitsPRO and ALM Media. He greatly enjoys learning from the vast minds in the legal, academic, advisory and money management communities when covering the retirement space. He's also written on international marketing trends, financial institution risk management, defense and energy issues, the restaurant industry in New York City, surfing, cigars, rum, travel, and fishing. When not writing, he's pushing into some land or water.