EXCLUSIVE: 26% want guidance on retirement decisions due to pension freedoms

guidance decisions pension freedoms

EXCLUSIVE: The pension freedoms, introduced in April 2015, gave many employees increased choice around how and when to access their pension. However, with more choice and flexibility has come a greater need for guidance around retirement savings.

This year, 26% of respondents have found that more employees want guidance around decisions at the point of retirement, according to research by Employee Benefits.

The Employee Benefits/Wealth at Work Pensions research 2019, which was conducted during October 2019 among 135 HR decision makers, also found that a further 26% have seen more staff look for guidance around pension savings in general,

In 2016, one year after the reforms were introduced, this picture was much more stark, when 47% of organisations found that employees wanted more guidance at retirement, and 36% were looking for more help regarding pension savings. The overall drops since then may reflect increased understanding and security over time, with help from measures put in place by employers.

While increased reliance on support systems may have been the price to pay, pension freedoms do continue to have a positive effect, with 26% saying that staff have become more engaged, and 34% noting that employees are now more likely to realise the value of this benefit.

In 2017, employers cited pensions engagement exercises (19%) and the introduction of financial education programmes for all staff (19%) as the top changes being made in response to pension freedoms. This has remained much the same in 2018 and 2019.