Given the chance to save at work for retirement or to save on your own, the right answer might be "both."
Almost three-quarters of workers have access to either an employee-funded or company-funded retirement plan, such as a 401(k) or pension—and of those, 80 percent are participating, according to an August report from the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies. But 58 percent of workers also say they are saving for retirement outside of work, with an IRA, brokerage account or other vehicle. Among the groups most likely to have an outside retirement savings vehicle: college-educated boomers, full-time workers, married individuals and savers earning at least $50,000.
The online survey was conducted in February and March among a nationally representative sample of 4,550 workers.
If you have access to a workplace plan, advisors say, there's good reason to focus on funding that first. "Your 401(k) is the most powerful retirement tool that you have," said Elizabeth Scheiderer, a certified financial planner with NCA Financial Planners in Cleveland.
It's a powerful combination: pretax contributions that lower your taxable income, a high annual employee contribution limit of $18,000 in 2015 ($24,000 if you're 50 or older), and, often, matching employer funds. "It's a good problem to have if you're maxing out your 401(k)," said Scheiderer.
Even if you're not, once you've socked away enough to snag the full match, there are several reasons it may be smart to explore other savings avenues for retirement.