On February 25, 2005, the Buyback function of OPTrust On-Line Services was released to the members of the OPSEU Pension Plan for production use. This new system exposes a rich variety of features to active plan members who have a purchasable Leave of Absence. The On-Line Services buyback system allows the member to:
- Obtain a cost quotation on-line,
- Elect to proceed with (or decline) the purchase, and,
- Select from a wide variety of financing options. Various lump sum or payroll deduction options are available.
In summary, the buyback process for an LOA can be completed on-line by the member without intervention by the plan office.
The system has a number of special features to help the member deal with the complexities involved in purchasing a Leave of Absence.
- Help the member to determine the appropriate purchasable period(s) where a member has been away from work after having a child.
- Determine the increase in basic pension as a result of purchasing credit.
- Determine the payback period - the period of time after which a buyback will have paid for itself.
- Automatic reminders are provided, via secure message, to assist the member to make payments on time, or to remind the member that a buyback quotation is outstanding.
As with all OPTrust On-Line Services, this new system is built around industry best practices in the pension administration area and also best practices in the banking industry. The technology platform used by OPTrust is the best available and has been used to make OPTrust On-Line Services both secure and highly functional.
OPTrust On-Line Services runs hand-in-hand with the OPTrust's Pension And Retirement Information System (PARIS). The On-Line Services buyback system leverages the existing BBS sub-system used by the OPTrust for internal processing of buybacks. The new buyback system is fully integrated with the existing PARIS workflow (CHATS), cheque processing, reciprocal transfer (XFS) and Member Information (MIS) systems.
ESTI is pleased to congratulate OPTrust on the success of this important project to enhance service to over 73,000 members and pensioners. While working with the OPTrust project team and other OPTrust partners, ESTI provided system architecture, software development, and system integration services to OPTrust to facilitate the implementation of the OPTrust On-Line Services Buyback system.
ESTI Project Team ESTI Project Manager: George Odegard, President ESTI Technical Analysts: Jemal Kobussen, Stacy Lloyd, Simon Gadd ESTI Analysts: Mohammed Huq, Kris Heshka Members of the CAST team worked on the new Buyback system.