Workplace Savings News: Employers are favouring corporate platforms

One-third (33%) of delegates who attended the Employee Benefits Pensions and Workplace Savings Summit 2012 will be bringing their financial benefits together in a corporate platform this year, according to a flash poll conducted at the event.

During the panel debate ‘Holistic approaches to workplace savings – new era or false dawn?’ on 9 March, a further 6% of delegates said they were not currently offering financial benefits in a corporate platform, but would consider it this year.

Financial benefits that can be rolled into a corporate platform include a pension scheme, corporate individual savings accounts (Isas) and share plans.

A platform can also include financial education and financial planning as a whole, said Tina Harris, head of employee platforms at The Platforum. “It comes along with financial education. It can also extend to the flexible benefits platform or wider investments.”

Employers on the panel shared their own experiences with platforms. Jenny Davidson, director of compensation and benefits, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) at CSC, said her company’s platform, which had been in place for two years, was constantly evolving.

Mike Sullivan, head ofemployee benefits and pensions at Veolia Environnement UK, said his company was interested in putting in a corporate Isa because it worked in some way for everyone.

“Right now we are focusing on spending a bit more to educate employees rather than putting in new products,” he said. “I do not care if employees are saving into a pension scheme or a corporate Isa, as long as they are saving into something.”

The Platforum’s Harris added: “Employers are grappling with an octopus. It is ultimately the responsibility of the employer to provide enough information for employees.”

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