Revamped TSP site, app due in June

TSP's website is going down temporarily for a redesign, but will be back with new and improved features sometime during the first week of next month.

The mainstay of self-managed retirement savings for most federal employees—the Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) website—is largely disabled for the time being, while the interface transitions through a long-planned overhaul.

But, feds, fear not: A new and improved site interface—along with a much-anticipated TSP app—should be ready and rolled out the other end, at some point during the first week of June, according to TSP management.

“Temporary suspension of certain TSP transactions and services is planned for May 16 until the first week of June,” the savings plan website announced. “As you may know already, we’re adding new features and tools to your TSP experience. In order to prepare for the transition to this new TSP system, we’ll need to temporarily suspend certain transactions and services for a brief period beginning May 16 and ending the first week of June.”

The revamp of the site started at the beginning of May, with little planned effect on site functionality. Next, a phase of partially-restricted working of the site is scheduled for mid-May.

However, TSP participants should be aware: All of the site’s key offerings become totally nonfunctional toward the end of May.

As TSP management notes: “There will be a short period—beginning at noon Eastern Time on Thursday, May 26, and ending [during] the first week of June—when we’ll need to suspend changes to TSP investments. This means that your TSP investments will still be subject to market gains and losses during this brief period, and you won’t be able to make changes until after the transition to the new service provider.”

The announcement further notes that during the transition period market forces will remain in play, affecting asset values. But TSP participants will not be able to use the site to reallocate their savings investments among the plan’s multiple funds.

In early June, various new features will be introduced on the revamped website. As an addition to the usual telephone customer service, participants will be invited to use a website-based, automated “virtual assistant” 24/7 as well as a new live-agent chat function connecting to TSP’s “ThriftLine” representatives (the latter during business hours, only.) Concurrently, the long-awaited mobile app offering multiple functions should also become available.

Other promised tweaks include more advanced security functions—such as fingerprint and facial recognition.

Users will also be able to carry out many functions that used to involve paper and analog signatures. “Complete forms, sign your name electronically, make loan payments, and do more with easy and secure processes”—all will soon be possible electronically, the fund promises.

And all of these new features are scheduled to become available next month. More information on TSP’s transition period is available on dedicated pages of the TSP website.

“The first thing you’ll notice when you log in is a fresh look to the new My Account interface,” TSP said, summing up. “Your account summary will display your investments clearly, and the navigation menu will make it easy for you to find and use account management tools. You’ll find all the functions you’re used to—and several new ones—in a responsive, mobile-friendly environment.”

TSP is often described as being the largest defined-contribution retirement plan in the world, and manages employee savings investments valued at hundreds of billions of dollars.

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