45% have not made financial calculations to understand their retirement needs


More than two-fifths (45%) of UK-based employee respondents have not made any financial calculations to understand their retirement needs, according to research by Mercer.

Its Healthy, wealthy and work-wise report, which surveyed 7,000 adults and 600 senior decision makers from private and public sector organisations based across 12 countries in seven regions, also found that 79% of global employee respondents and 82% of UK-based employee respondents trust their employers to give independent advice on planning, saving and investing.

The research also found:

  • 81% of global employee respondents and 87% of UK-based employee respondents feel personally responsible for their retirement income.
  • 26% of global employees who have yet to retire are confident they will save enough for retirement, compared to 25% employees working in the UK.
  • 68% of global employee respondents and 65% of UK employee respondents expect to keep working in some capacity or never retire, although 39% of global respondents and 43% of UK respondents admit to be in excellent or good enough health to perform the job they have today.
  • 13% of UK employee respondents have consulted a financial adviser to help calculate their retirement savings, and 49% state that they trust financial advisers, compared to 56% of global employee respondents.

Rich Nuzum (pictured), president, wealth at Mercer, said: “The catalyst for our research was the convergence of several global trends including economic uncertainty, pension shortfalls, people living longer, ageism and reductions in employee benefits among other factors. These trends intersect health, wealth and careers, so planning for financial security must account for each of these core areas.

“The existing expectation to retire at a certain age no longer applies. As people live and work longer, it is time to retire the concept of retirement as we currently know it. To live well later we need to act now, and [the] responsibility to act is incumbent across the private sector, public sector and individuals.”

Eve Read, consulting leader, defined contribution and individual wealth at Mercer, added: “Everyone has a role to play in closing the savings gap. The majority of our research participants trust their employer to provide sound independent advice and although many [organisations] may not want to offer advice, they can have a real impact on the financial security of their workforce through other initiatives. The employee benefits market is constantly evolving and offering benefits such as financial education or the short-term use of pension contributions to meet other financial priorities are a good place to start.

“Evidence suggests that [employees] without financial concerns are more productive and those with employers who provide financial wellness solutions are more engaged in their work. It’s a win-win for both employers and employees.”