- the increase in the de-risking market;
- the roll-out of auto enrolment;
- tPR’s publication of the 31 DC quality features;
- the announcement that contracting out for DB schemes will cease in 2016.
Five years is a long time in anyone’s book and, as a rule of thumb, it either calls for celebration or a period of reflection. In the case of the Pension Regulator's Detailed Guidance on Record Keeping, published in June 2010, I would suggest the latter. The parameters were clear: trustees were to ensure that by December 2012, 100% of members had a full set of common data for entries post June 2010, with the standard set at 95% of members for pre June 2010 entries. Behind that, the conditional data - data conditional on a number of factors, such as scheme design, a member's status in the scheme and their respective individual events - was given a more ambiguous target. The emphasis was on trustees to be aware of their conditional data but not necessarily to have taken steps in rectifying any issues. As a means of communicating progress, tPR published their record keeping survey in 2013 and a follow-up in 2014. Despite an improvement in the scores from 2013, tPR found that many schemes were still falling short of the standards set for measuring data quality and maintaining accurate records. It wasn’t surprising, however, that larger schemes with money to spend had a better quality of data than those at the smaller end of the spectrum. Market developments It cannot be understated that good record-keeping is key to running a pension scheme effectively. This target-setting is dovetailed with other developments in the pensions industry over the last five years. In each case, data quality plays a central theme: