The Government has confirmed it is to launch a prototype of its Pensions Dashboard in March 2017, and that it intends to have the Dashboard fully operational by 2019. The initiative is designed to allow consumers to view details of all of their retirement savings in one place, and research has suggested that some people have around a dozen different pension pots by the time they retire, simply because of the number of different companies they have worked for. Some consumers have reported being unaware they had some of these ‘pots’ simply because their retirement savings had become so complex.
The Government also believes that highlighting the existence of all of these pension pots could prompt more people to seek guidance and/or professional financial advice.
11 of the largest pension providers – Aviva, Aon, HSBC, LV=, NEST, Now: Pensions, The People’s Pension, Royal London, Standard Life, Zurich and Willis Towers Watson – have agreed to participate in the project.
The Economic Secretary to the Treasury, Simon Kirby MP, said:
“Pensions and savings decisions are some of the most important a person will make during their lifetime. The government is determined to make sure people can access the information they need to plan effectively for their future.
“Technology, like mobile phone apps, has made day to day banking easier than it’s ever been and it is time for pensions to catch up. Think of a future where you can compare your pension pots with the touch of a button.
“The Pensions Dashboard will unlock a huge amount of information that will help people make the best choices for them and I am delighted that eleven of the largest pension providers have agreed to work together to build a working prototype by March 2017.
Aviva’s Chief Digital Officer, Andrew Brem, said:
“The Pensions Dashboard is a vital tool in increasing engagement with savings and I’m really pleased that we are working on the pilot.
“As an industry we need to make it as easy as possible for people to get a view of all their retirement savings in one place to help them take control of their future.”
CEO of the People’s Pension – one of the main providers of occupational pension schemes – Patrick Heath-Lay, said:
“The Pensions Dashboard has the opportunity to change the way the we do pensions, delivering an infrastructure that has the potential to allow people the opportunity to see all their pensions in one place whilst driving greater efficiency within the pensions system. But it must be built first and foremost for savers and have strong, independent, ownership and governance.
“It is great that the government and industry are working together to make this a reality. It is crucial that we all make the most of this opportunity and the industry as a whole embraces the dashboard.”
Addressing a conference at which the Dashboard was being launched, Mr Kirby said that it was time the pensions sector caught up with the types of technological advances demonstrated by mobile banking applications and comparison sites.
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