22 December 2015 – Royal London press release
Royal London calls in a press release for the Government to cease being an armchair observer and instead to play an active part in industry discussions about creating a pensions dashboard since it needs to include state pension information.
18 December 2015 – NEST press release
In a press release setting out its response to the Financial Advice Market Review, the National Employment Savings Trust (NEST) calls for a combination of simpler advice & guidance and well-governed retirement products to help members get the most from their retirement savings. NEST encouraged the Government to continue developing the quality and tailoring of the free Pension Wise guidance, as well as encouraging cross-industry collaboration to develop better, more engaging consumer tools such as a pensions dashboard to underpin Pension Wise.
17 December 2015 – Government response
The Work and Pensions Select Committee (WPSC) publishes the Government response to their 14 October 2015 report. In their response, the Government said if the industry identifies the legislative and regulatory barriers preventing firms from innovating in relation to a pensions dashboard, then the Government will consider whether these can be overcome. The Government repeated its view that any dashboard development must be industry, not Government, led.
14 December 2015 – HMRC announcement
Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (HMRC) publishes a document entitled Making Tax Digital setting out how, by 2020, HMRC will have moved to a fully digital tax system where taxpayers have fully digital tax accounts. Taxpayers will be able to access a range of other services through their digital tax account, including, as an early step in the timeline to 2020, seeing how their National Insurance contributions affect their state pension.
4 November 2015 – Dunstan Thomas press release
Dunstan Thomas’s Retirement Strategy Director Adrian Boulding explains in a press release how Dunstan Thomas is set to work with a small number of large pensions providers on a dashboard pilot in the first quarter of 2016.
28 October 2015 – MAS strategy
The Money Advice Service (MAS) publishes a Financial Capability Strategy for the UK. The second of the five priority action areas, under the strategy’s Retirement Planning theme, is about improving access to pension information. MAS’s specific actions are to:
- co-ordinate digital initiatives focused on improving the ease and accessibility of pension information for consumers, including the pensions dashboard initiative
- build an enhanced retirement income planning tool that allows people to develop different retirement income scenarios.
19 October 2015 – Hymans Robertson press release
Hymans Robertson publishes a press release setting out the results of its consumer research into the pension freedoms. One finding of the research was that 72% of consumers felt that having a complete picture of what all their pensions plus state pension would provide in retirement would act as an incentive to save, thus supporting the need for a pensions dashboard.
14 October 2015 – Altus blog post
Ben Cocks, Software Products Director at financial services technology provider Altus, argues in a blog post that the dashboard should adopt an open standards or ‘federated’ model in which multiple competing technology suppliers provide interoperable solutions. The open competition between technology providers drives down costs and encourages innovation. Under this model, different companies would launch their own dashboard service for their customers.
Ben also stated that regulators, providers and technology companies have already started sketching out how a dashboard might be delivered, and it might just be possible if all parties are willing to play their part in an open and collaborative debate.
14 October 2015 – WPSC report
The Parliamentary Work and Pensions Select Committee (WPSC) publishes a Report on the new pensions freedoms setting out how the freedoms add to the already strong case for a dashboard. The WPSC also heard evidence that a dashboard has been essential for many, many years, but that now there is momentum behind the proposal, with broad appetite for this reform.
Development of the dashboard is now a question of having the will and finding someone who is willing to pay for and own it. Provided data security can be assured, the WPSC said it would welcome development of the dashboard in the private sector, but with Government playing an important role in ensuring progress is maintained. The WPSC urged the Government to maintain the current momentum by announcing a clear timetable for the dashboard’s introduction.
12 October 2015 – PensionsLink blog post
Ewan Porter, Business Development at PensionsLink (incorporating FindMyLostPension.com), writes in an Adviser Lounge blog post that the outcomes, funding and scope of Origo’s pension register service is unclear. He argues that the lost pensions issue could be resolved less expensively benefiting employees, schemes, administrators, insurance companies and HM Treasury.
5 October 2015 – The People’s Pension article
The People’s Pension’s Director of Policy and Market Engagement Darren Philp writes in a Pensions World article that by adopting a pension dashboard the UK pensions industry can drastically improve communications between a member and their scheme, and only by embracing new technology can the UK pensions industry help to promote a savings culture.
29 September 2015 – Actuaries briefing paper
The Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (IFoA) publishes a Policy Briefing paper outlining four key priorities for policymakers to consider to encourage and enable individuals to save for their retirement. Priority 4 states that individuals need to understand the level of savings required to meet their retirement income needs and should be encouraged to make this level of savings. The IFoA included the dashboard policy in this Priority, but argued if the tool’s costs fall to the customer, Government should ask if the benefits of having the tool outweigh the cost to individuals’ savings.
25 September 2015 – Capita and JLT comment
Capita’s Head of Research and Engagement Gareth Davies expresses fears in a Pensions Expert article that a pensions dashboard could fail in its objective and do more harm than good, the concern being that if the dashboard isn’t perfect, people will switch off and disengage. Only if every scheme and provider is on board will the initiative succeed. In the same article, JLT Director Mark Pemberthy says there are very big questions to be answered around funding and data standards for all legacy pension administrators. It will be such a big task to build a platform aggregating state, public, private, DB, DC, legacy and personal pensions, requiring continual re-investment.
23 September 2015 – Origo announcement
Origo, the financial services eCommerce standards body, announces in a press release that it is going to develop a Pension Register Service which provides an index of ‘who holds what where’ (i.e. what pensions does each individual have with each pension provider / scheme?). This will offer a database and hub enabling financial brands and other bodies to deliver a pensions dashboard. Origo’s Managing Director Paul Pettitt said they believe delivery of a visible window on a person’s net worth will have a profound and positive effect on the UK’s savings and investment culture.
16 September 2015 – Treasury evidence
According to a FT Adviser report, as part of her oral evidence to the Work and Pensions Select Committee, Economic Secretary to the Treasury Harriet Baldwin MP says that, whilst she thinks a pensions dashboard would be extremely popular and welcome by consumers, she does not currently think it is the government’s role to fund it.
8 September 2015 – Pensions PlayPen blog post
Pensions PlayPen’s Henry Tapper reports in a blog post how the previous day, at a hearing of the Work and Pensions Select Committee, there was consensus that a pensions dashboard is a good idea. He argued that ultimately the provision of information to the dashboard needs to be free and is confident the financial services industry will find a way to make that happen.
5 August 2015 – DWP announcement
According to an FT Adviser article, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) announces the closure of the combined pension statement service, working instead with HMRC to deliver a new digital service that will help users understand the link between their state pension and national insurance. The new service is currently being tested with the aim of making it public later in 2015.
27 July 2015 – Euraplan article
Paul Lalwan of investment & accounting software provider Euraplan comments in a Pensions World article that the idea of a UK pensions dashboard is not new, citing that ten years ago the DWP’s retirement planner initiative was shelved due to issues around costs, funding, IT and risk.
However, other countries have implemented a pensions dashboard with high levels of consumer engagement, such as “Mijnpensioenoverzicht” in the Netherlands and “Pensionsinfo” in Denmark (used by almost half of citizens approaching retirement age). Paul also discussed the issue of keeping track of pensions across EU borders and the “Track & Trace Your Pension in Europe” (TTYPE) project within the “Service for Tracking European Pensions” (STEP).
For all these initiatives, the goal was and is challenging, requiring, above all, cooperation among all the interested parties (private and public), as well as private sector appetite to help individuals with their pension planning and / or Governmental desire to compel the private sector to do so.
27 July 2015 – Government & FCA responses
The Work and Pensions Select Committee (WPSC) publishes the Government & FCA responses to their 4 March 2015 report. In their responses, the Government & FCA say they are continuing to work towards the pensions dashboard, currently looking at the various options for infrastructure, models and testing, as well as how best to work with industry to develop the dashboard service in the most effective and efficient way.
14 July 2015 – Altus article
Ben Cocks, Software Products Director at financial services technology provider Altus, argues in an FT Adviser article that the pensions dashboard could be within our grasp by utilising TISA’s digital passport initiative alongside the DWP’s federated model of multiple pension registers (previously proposed to support their small pots policy). By combining these projects, a service could be created where a customer signing up with a new platform could ask it to find all their pension policies. This is possible because all these initiatives are based on open standards and multiple, competitive, interoperable technology suppliers, and not a centralised monopolistic technology infrastructure.
13 July 2015 – F&TRC article
Financial & Technology Research Centre (F&TRC) Director Ian McKenna says in a Money Marketing article that the FCA should ditch its dashboard plans because a plethora of existing and new private sector solutions are emerging to fulfil this role. An FCA or Government-backed pension portal will be a major step towards nationalising the UK savings industry, significantly undermining competition between providers’ differentiated offerings. What the FCA should do, however, is compel all industry players to deliver to consumers the information they need in a format they can use.
13 July 2015 – Capgemini blog post
Capgemini’s Rod Bryson argues in a blog post that the development of a pensions dashboard will be incredibly helpful in supporting consumers understand their pension pot values and how they can build on these, in turn enabling providers to protect the value of the funds they are managing.
7 July 2015 – IRESS blog post
Chris Pitt of wealth management systems provider IRESS sets out in a blog post how a pensions dashboard will allow the financial advisory market to flourish, a) by creating more financially engaged consumers and b) by significantly reducing administrative burdens such as fact finds. Chris argued that technology is key to engaging consumers with their financial future, automating administration, influencing consumer behaviour, and enabling previously unthinkable functions.
26 June 2015 – OIX final report
Further to their interim results workshop in February (see below), the Open Identity Exchange (OIX) publishes its final white paper containing the findings of its Pension Finder Discovery Project.
18 June 2015 – Reform paper
Reform publishes a paper entitled How to run a country: Pensions including a suite of pensions recommendations for the 2015 Spending Review. The paper supported the FCA’s dashboard proposals but recommended that the Government should accelerate and prioritise the roll out of the Pensions Dashboard (i.e. faster than the “next few years” envisaged by the FCA). The report argued that “the sooner [the dashboard] is available, the better.”
18 May 2015 – Eversheds white paper
Law firm Eversheds publishes a pensions white paper entitled Rebuilding the consensus, with one of the paper’s 10 recommendations to Government being to facilitate the establishment of an online pensions ‘dashboard’ to help people manage their pension savings.
6 May 2015 – Reform event
Speaking at a Reform event, Mark Hoban recommends that the Money Advice Service (MAS) budget be extended, through an increase in the industry levy, to fund their operation of the proposed RetirementSaverService.
14 April 2015 – Aegon report
Aegon publishes research which found that 75% of pension scheme members surveyed thought they would find a pensions dashboard service very or somewhat useful, echoing The People’s Pension’s research published a fortnight earlier.
27 March 2015 – Reading University workshop
Speaking on the topic of “Public Understanding of Risk and Its Effect on Pension Engagement” at the University of Reading’s pensions workshop, the Open University’s Sharon Collard highlights the pensions dashboard proposal as a key practical step to give people more control and autonomy.
27 March 2015 – The People’s Pension research report
The People’s Pension (TPP) publishes a research report entitled Public Attitudes towards a Pensions Dashboard. The research, undertaken by YouGov, found that 77% of people surveyed support the idea of a dashboard where they could see all their pension savings online in the same place, including their state pension. Women (80%) and those aged 25 to 34 (84%) were the most interested in a pensions dashboard. TPP’s Director of Policy and Market Engagement Darren Philp said the findings support the current calls for a dashboard. “It works in other countries, and it is time for the UK to catch up.”
26 March 2015 – TISA press release
Tax Incentivised Savings Association (TISA)’s Director General David Dalton-Brown says in a press release that TISA are very supportive of the pensions dashboard. Recent research by The Savings & Investment Policy project (TSIP), run by TISA, found that over a third (36%) of people would find it easier to manage their personal finances if all of their details were held on one online site.
26 March 2015 – NOW: Pensions press release
NOW: Pensions’ Chief Executive Morten Nilsson says in a press release that the FCA’s decision to push ahead with a pensions dashboard is “sensible, practical and fantastic news”. NOW: Pensions feels that including state benefits in the dashboard is essential, and the long term aim should be comprehensive coverage. They note though that the Danish dashboard service did not start comprehensively but has grown from an initial launch of just a few larger pension providers. NOW: Pensions believes that, despite the delivery challenges for the industry, the long term benefits of the pensions dashboard are immediately obvious.
26 March 2015 – FCA final report
The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) publishes its Retirement Income Market Study Final Report. Following consultation on the dashboard idea, the report confirmed the proposal will be taken forward for design and implementation by Government with the FCA’s input. The FCA confirmed they are in discussions with Government to explore the most effective and efficient way to develop a dashboard solution with a view to implementation in the next few years. Development of the solution would consider various potential models and be undertaken and tested on an incremental basis. It would also be important to consider the costs and benefits of eventual solutions.
88% of the consultation responses on this topic received by the FCA were supportive in principle of the pensions dashboard solution.
Practical issues raised in the consultation responses included:
- regulatory imperative to make the development happen
- ownership of the dashboard service (or multiple services)
- development & operational costs and funding sources (e.g. unclaimed assets)
- dashboard coverage, availability of data and data protection
- differing “as at dates” of fund values and missing unique identifiers
- potential exposure of commercially sensitive information.
Respondents also felt that for the dashboard to be truly effective, there needs to be a cultural shift in consumer engagement, recognising the cultural differences between the UK and other countries with a pensions dashboard. The FCA highlighted the opportunity to learn from other countries’ roadmaps towards a dashboard solution, as well as drawing on the design and implementation recommendations of the European Commission’s “Track and Trace your Pension in Europe” (TTYPE) consortium.
11 March 2015 – FIC report
The Financial Inclusion Commission (FIC) publishes its Improving the financial health of the nation report. One of 22 recommendations is for Government and industry to work together to deliver a Swedish-style pensions dashboard to help people understand the value of their consolidated public, private and occupational pension income. The FIC was impressed that the Swedish pensions dashboard is updated on a regular, near real-time basis, with 23% of the Swedish population registered to use the service, and all within a reported annual budget of about £4 million.
10 March 2015 – TISA report
The Tax Incentivised Savings Association (TISA) publishes a suite of policy recommendations from The Savings & Investments Policy project (TSIP). The first recommendation is to revolutionise how consumers can view a complete picture of their pension savings through the development of a secure digital passport, established by a pan-industry forum supported by Government and the FCA.
4 March 2015 – WPSC report
The Parliamentary Work and Pensions Select Committee (WPSC) publishes a Progress report on automatic enrolment and the pension reforms which supports the FCA’s dashboard proposals. The WPSC recommended that the next Government (i.e. following the May 2015 General Election) should ensure regulators prioritise the introduction of a pensions dashboard (ideally including both private and state entitlements), and make it mandatory for providers to use the dashboard.
4 March 2015 – Ceridian conference
Speaking at the Ceridian Customer Conference 2015, Pensions Minister Steve Webb calls on the next Government to implement a combined state and private pension statement, similar to the FCA’s dashboard proposals, within the next two years. However, Ros Altmann (later to become the new Pensions Minister), whilst supportive of the idea as something that could and should happen in the long term, was doubtful such a “massive task” could be undertaken within two years.
24 February 2015 – ABI think piece
The Association of British Insurers (ABI) publishes its Retirement 2050 think piece including information on the Swedish, Danish and Norwegian pensions dashboards.
3 February 2015 – OIX interim results workshop
Barclays’ Clive Grinyer presents the interim results of the Open Identity Exchange (OIX) Pension Finder Discovery Project. This project (run jointly by Barclays, the Money Advice Service, HM Treasury, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and the Cabinet Office) looked at how digital identity can be used to solve the problem of reuniting people with their pension savings whilst ensuring the individual has the correct identity and entitlement to the relevant benefits.
The Pensions Finder project:
- helped participants move from confusion to empowerment by engaging with their individual pension situation
- found that pensions information presented via a secure, easy to use digital service may prompt action based on informed decision making
- increased consumer trust through the collaboration of Government and the financial sector.
28 January 2015 – Reform paper
Following the FT report the previous July (see 2014), independent think tank Reform publishes Mark Hoban’s paper of extensive, detailed proposals for a new RetirementSaverService. This new service would incorporate a pensions dashboard alongside tailored guidance for consumers. The paper envisaged that the dashboard should be independent and provided by the Money Advice Service (MAS). It also recommended the new service should look to international examples for its development, including Minpension in Sweden and the Pensions Dashboard in the Netherlands.
10 January 2015 – Age UK discussion paper
Age UK publishes a discussion paper entitled Dashboards and Jam Jars. In the report, independent consultant Dominic Lindley states that it will be harder for individuals to take decisions (under the new pension freedoms) unless they can access details of all of their pension entitlements in one place.
Age UK therefore proposed that consumers should be provided with a dashboard which gathers and displays data electronically from all their defined benefit (DB), defined contribution (DC) and state pension arrangements. To facilitate this, the Government / Regulators should require pension schemes to make the necessary data available in machine-readable format. Age UK also suggested the dashboard could be used to help engage and prepare consumers for decisions about their retirement income.