Lambert Smith Hampton launches group Sipp

Lambert Smith Hampton has launched a group self-invested personal pension (Sipp) to aid recruitment and retention.

This is the first time that the commercial property consultancy has offered a pension scheme with company contributions to all of its 950 employees.

Previously, it offered a stakeholder scheme with no employer contribution, which was taken up by approximately 17 employees. It also operated a final salary plan for about 20 staff who had transferred to the company with protected rights.

Keith Jones, HR director, hopes the new plan, will achieve a 75% take-up rate. Employees who enrol will receive a 3% contribution from the company, provided they sign up to contribute 3% or more through a salary sacrifice arrangement.

"We are also looking for them to do bonus waiver as well. A lot of our people earn decent bonuses, which this year will be paid in July. They will have an opportunity if they want to have some of their bonus paid direct into their pension," explained Jones.

He added the company had been placed under pressure to introduce a pension scheme with employer contributions because most of its competitors already contributed to pension schemes for their staff.

However, Jones believes Lambert Smith Hampton is unique in the industry in offering a group Sipp.

"Sipps have traditionally been seen at products for high-net worth individuals. What [our] Sipp does is to offer the opportunity for staff to invest in a variety of different asset classes, including commercial property," he said.

The Sipp was communicated throughout March using on-site presentations and one-to-one meetings.