Employers who sponsor a retirement plan for their employees have the intention of providing an extremely valuable service. The employer-sponsored retirement plan is often the most important savings vehicle for an individual and can determine how comfortable that individuals golden years will be.
Private endowments, foundations and public charities (such as community foundations) have honorable motives and strive to operate in a way that respects their philanthropic origin. Board members or trustees of a charity have fiduciary duties to the organization. As investment stewards, they must care for the organization's assets and put the organization's interests first.
Some Service Providers assume numerous investment fiduciary responsibilities on behalf of the employer plan sponsors. Some are known as "3(16) fiduciaries", derived from Section 3(16) of the Employee Retirement and Investment Security Act (ERISA), and assume certain plan management responsibilities thereby easing the fiduciary burden of the plan sponsor.
Governments, unions or sovereign nations (i.e. governance entity) have a responsibility to oversee the mission, strategic direction, finances and operations for their respective constituents. They have an especially high commitment to fulfill these responsibilities honestly and with integrity. With respect to the treasury function, they must establish clear and understandable policies and ensure that they are followed.