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Hewitt Associates

Hewitt Associates

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Published by Charitra Mehta

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Published by: Charitra Mehta on Mar 03, 2012
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Hewitt Associates
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(August 2007)
Hewitt Associates
Public(NYSE: HEW) 
Acquired by Aon 
October 1, 2010
Key people
$3.2 billion in fiscal 2008
resources (HR) outsourcing and consulting firm delivering a complete range of integrated services to help
companies manage their total HR and employee costs, enhance HR services, and improve their workforces.Hewitt was founded in 1940 and ceased to exist as an independent entity at the completion of its purchase bythe Aon Corporation in October 2010. Hewitt's operations were merged at that time with some elements of
Founded: 1940 as Edwin Shields Hewitt and Associates
NAIC: 541214 Payroll Services; 541612 Human Resources and ExecutiveSearch Consulting Services; 561310 Employment Placement Services;561320 Temporary Help Services; 561330 Professional EmployerOrganizations
SIC: 7361 Employment Agencies; 7363 Help Supply Services
Aon bought Hewitt, renamed to AON Hewitt .
Edwin "Ted" Hewitt founded Edwin Shields Hewitt and Associates on October 1, 1940, as a brokerage housefocusing on insurance and personal financial services. During and after the war, Hewitt's particular expertisebecame immensely valuable when the government instituted "pay-as-you-go" income taxes in 1943 and theU.S. cost of living increased more than 25 percent in 1945. Once the war and its rationing ended, Americansreturned to work and the economy recovered. Hewitt's clients, many of whom had manufactured goods for thewar effort, returned to their customary businesses and thrived. Hewitt began offering its clients statements to
track their employee benefits and had pioneered the use of specific financial goals for company investments.Hewitt's programs were the first of their kind to be approved by the Internal Revenue Service; they were socutting edge the U.S. Department of Labor asked the firm to create forms for the welfare and pension programsof the 1950s.By the 1960s the Hewitt firm continued to expand its pension and benefit plans, creating more sophisticatedprograms for its clients. During the decade the firm revolutionized employee benefit packages once again, asthe first company to design pension and benefit plans tied to a corporation's revenue and growth projections.While such a practice became commonplace in the pension and employee benefits of larger corporations, itwas another in Hewitt's growing list of industry firsts. Hewitt was so respected for its work in the field that it wasthe only company asked by the U.S. government to consult on the Federal Interagency Task Force from 1964to 1968. The Task Force was responsible for the design and implementation of the new Employee RetirementIncome Security Act.In the next decade Hewitt began offering its clients an increasing number of innovative products, including itstrademarked Benefit Index to track the performance of benefit programs. The Benefit Index was anotherindustry first and soon became the standard to which all aspired. Hewitt also offered its clients several flexibleinvestment strategies for employee benefit packages, which led to the formation of a new consulting firm, theHewitt Investment Group, in 1974.
1980s and 1990s
Hewitt continually sought to better its programs. The company began to conduct in-depth surveys to find outwhich benefit programs worked best and which ones needed improvement. In the 1980s Hewitt researchednumerous issues and began issuing its findings industry-wide on subjects such as offering benefits to part-timeemployees, full versus partial hospital reimbursement, fluctuating profit-sharing percentages, mental healthbenefits, 401(k) programs, and rising health plan deductibles. Another topical issue was computer use forautomated benefit calculations.The use of computers had finally begun to take hold in larger businesses, as Hewitt found automated benefitprograms had increased remarkably from 1986 to 1988. In a survey detailed in PC Week (November 6, 1989),Hewitt had surveyed 700 companies to find 71 percent had become either fully or partially automated in theiradministration of benefits plans, up from 48 percent two years before. Hewitt responded to the expanding useof technology by designing computerized benefit programs and software so companies could manage theirbenefit plans. Hewitt Technologies was created in 1988 to monitor and respond to the industry's rapidlychanging technological needs.By the beginning of the 1990s Hewitt had ventured abroad and offered tailored benefit programs tocorporations in the United Kingdom. The firm had brought in more than $250 million in revenues for 1990 and

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