GE rolls out new retirement communications strategy

GE is in the throes rolling out a new retirement communications strategy to help communicate the new pension freedoms available to staff from 6 April. 

It is part of a flexible retirement policy that the organisation, which specialises in energy, healthcare, aviation and transport services, implemented last year. 

General Electric

Michelle Newton, European benefits specialist at GE, said: “At that point in time, we didn’t do anything for our employees [other than] give them a pensions statement.

”It’s quite shameful for us to admit we done that, because the majority of our employees have probably been with us most of their working lives.”

The employer has partnered with Close Brothers to implement its communication strategy, which will include an explanation of the forthcoming pension changes for all 19,500 UK staff in the next two weeks followed by two phases of targeted communications, the first for the over-55s and the second for staff aged 45.

Retirement seminars will run during April and May.

The employer, which has over 4,000 staff aged over 55, is also providing staff with defined benefit, defined contribution and hybrid retirement modellers and annuity service support.

GE has two pension schemes – a hybrid (defined contribution/cash) scheme and a defined benefit scheme, which is closed to new entrants but open to future accruals. 

Newton said that the organisation is carefully signposting each retirement support service to ensure that staff fully understand which best suits their needs.