Businesses are hiring, employers are using their 401(k) plans to attract better talent, and plan sponsors that dropped their match in the wake of the financial crisis are re-implementing them, according to the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies annual survey. 

Seventy-two percent of the employers surveyed reported having hired new employees in the past year, the center said. And of those employers that do sponsor a defined contribution plan, 89 percent believe their plans are important to the effort to attract top talent. 

The number of employers offering plans jumped from 72 percent to 79 percent between 2007 and 2014, the center said. Among companies with more than 500 employees, 98 percent now offer plans. About 95 percent of small employers (100 to 499 employees) offer plans, and 73 percent of micro companies (10 to 99 employees). 

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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.