How do you manage your workplace pension? Or, perhaps a more pressing question, do you engage with it at all? For many, actively managing their workplace pension isn't high on the list of priorities, but perhaps it would be if it was more convenient…
According to research from Aegon, just 23% of workplace pension scheme members currently manage their pensions online, with significant barriers remaining. It seems that few employers offer this type of service, but the figures show that it would be well-received.
Nearly 65% of scheme members would use a facility to manage their pension online if their employer offered it, and a similar number (63%) would actively prefer to manage their pension savings in this way. A further 75% would find a pensions dashboard service useful.
The desire to actively manage pension savings is clearly there, but the facilities may not be so readily available. The research highlights the growing demand for digital pension and savings management solutions, which has the potential to increase engagement – and could even help boost savings habits in the process.
Angela Seymour-Jackson, managing director for Workplace at Aegon UK, commented: "As we enter the new world of pension flexibilities, it's more important than ever to provide the facility for members to manage their pensions online. Employees should be able to manage their retirement savings in whatever way suits them, and our research indicates that the majority would welcome an easy-to-use digital pension management solution in the workplace.
"Nowadays, digital engagement opportunities and online tools for members should be viewed as essentials for employers when selecting a workplace pension scheme. Technology is the key to empowering people to take control of their financial futures. It's used every day for current accounts, ISAs, credit cards, mortgages – why not pensions? Engaging with your pension aged 50 or 60 is too late. People need to keep track of their progress from the moment they start saving for retirement so that they have a clear picture of what their savings will be worth at the point of retirement."
Being fully engaged with your pension savings is the key to ensuring a comfortable retirement income. For example, if you're able to easily see the performance of your funds, you could make changes as necessary (or according to your risk appetite) to see if you can improve your returns.
Seeing how much your pot is worth could also be a huge incentive as you'll have a better idea of whether you need to increase your contributions, and if you received a prompt at key times (such as at a pay rise) you'd be reminded that it's time to re-consider your monthly contribution level. Active engagement could well lead to a larger savings pot in the long run, so if your scheme already offers online management, start taking advantage and get in control.
Read our pension and retirement guides for extra support
Disclaimer: Information is correct as of the date of publication (shown at the top of this article). Any products featured may be withdrawn by their provider or changed at any time.
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