We are very proud to have been a member of the specialist services panels introduced by the Pensions Protection Fund (PPF) in 2011. The average time for a scheme going through assessment then was closer to three years as opposed to the target time of two years.
Roll forward to 2014 and the average time is now 20 months, according to Sue Rivas, Deputy Director of Scheme and Member Services at the PPF. Without a doubt the work of the panels has been a huge contributory factor in this improvement.
Several panels have subsequently been introduced which has further streamlined the process and allowed continual improvements in service to be made.
Being a member of the panel has allowed us to use the expertise that we have built up since the introduction of the PPF in 2005. Attending panel forums and pooling ideas and strategies has been a big leap forward, and key to this has been the fact that the PPF team has listened to what has been said and introduced many of the suggestions and ideas which have come out of these forums.
Communication has always been key to improving service and having designated individuals both from the panels and the PPF has allowed any issues to be dealt with immediately. Gone are the days when any issues are dealt with at the end of the process, with the inevitable delays that might arise.
There will always be room for improvement, and we will continue to look at ways to do things better because ultimately, it is the member that will benefit from the protection for their hard earned pension that the PPF can provide.