Fluidata auto-enrols staff four years early

With an average age of just 29, pensions had never been high on the agenda for employees of telecoms provider Fluidata.

But with auto-enrolment on the horizon and increasing media coverage about the looming pensions crisis, the organisation decided to auto-enrol four years before its 2016 staging date and go straight to an 8% employee contribution level, with 6% coming from the employer.

Nigel Sanders, finance director, says: “We didn’t see why we should do it all at the last minute when we could offer it as a benefit to our employees now.”

The move also dovetailed with a wider shift towards encouraging a performance-based pay structure and promoting other benefits, such as subsided gym membership and private health insurance. “Our policy is that we will invest in and develop our staff, and the pension fits in with that,” says Sanders.

Fluidata decided to go with the government’s National Employment Savings Trust (Nest) scheme, largely because of its low fees. It ran sessions outlining the importance of staff saving for their retirement from a young age, Sanders adds.

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The organisation saw a take-up rate of 94%. Sanders believes the business is also seeing a return in other areas.

“Our performance appraisals show a marked increase in people hitting their objectives,” he explains. “It’s actually a very small cost compared to what we get out of it.”