BP is to extend its online pensions communication to include members of its six subsidiary schemes and Burmah Castrol’s final salary scheme, which it acquired, along with the company, in 2000.
Active members of these schemes could previously access generic information online, through BP’s Pension Line website, but the company will now enable them to access their personal details online, through a password-protected site. This information will include the date on which the member joined the scheme, their address and pensionable salary.
To date, the facility has only been available to BP’s main pension scheme members, of which 12,000 are active. The extension of the site’s availability is planned for June, but the date is to be confirmed. The move will affect about 1,750 active pension scheme members.
The company also plans to introduce online annual pension statements for members of its subsidiary schemes and the Burmah Castrol plan later in the year. These statements will differ from those currently provided to members of the main BP pension scheme, as they won’t be updated on a daily basis.
Peter Lay, pensions communications manager, said extending the online services is key to the culture of the business and its aim to provide information that is relevant to staff.
“There is a demand for access to personalised information by employees who are not members of the main BP scheme, but are in BP’s various subsidiary pension arrangements. This is something we are now addressing as part of a review of the whole Pensionline website,” he explained.
Later in the year, members of BP’s main final salary scheme, into which approximately 90% of staff are enrolled, will also receive an online state pension forecast, in addition to their annual scheme statement.
The forecast will combine information about their occupational scheme with details of their state pension, subject to staff giving permission for the company to exchange information with the Department for Work and Pensions.
Members of the Burmah Castrol and subsidiary schemes already receive paper-based combined forecasts, but they will also be given access to them online later in the year.
“We feel that people need to be aware of all of their pension benefits. While staff are very knowledgeable within BP and passionate about their company pension, their state pension is equally important,” said Lay.