Time for trustees to catch up, says Spence

by Alan Collins   •  
Blog
Spence & Partners, the UK pensions actuaries and administration specialists, today advised that defined benefit (DB) trustees need to gear up to use the power they can now have at the touch of a button. Alan Collins, Head of Trustee Advisory Services at Spence & Partners, commented: “With Pensions Freedom Day capturing the headlines, it would be easy to think that DB schemes have been left behind. But actually the development of technology in the past year has been such that trustees now have the potential to operate their schemes in a much more effective and efficient way. “With the right system, trustees can now have daily valuation figures and actuarial analytics based on live administration data, daily asset feeds from investment managers and projected future cashflow information at their finger tips.  The days of waiting for actuaries to provide complex reports and calculations are over - it is up to trustees to ensure they have the right processes and structure in place to use up to date information and speed up their decision making.” With the right systems in place trustees should be able to achieve:
  1. An end to uncertainty – all stakeholders being aware of the scheme funding levels at all times – the triennial valuation or annual funding update would no longer be a surprise, allowing trustees to manage their long-term funding plan all year round.
  2. Full visibility and transparency at all times – Scheme data and funding figures should be easily accessible. Anything the advisers can see, the trustees should see too.
  3. Quick and cost-effective decision making – the faster process will substantially reduce adviser costs and significantly reduce the risk of missing investment, funding and de-risking opportunities.
  4. Cost control – with fully programmed and automatic calculations, trustees can focus their spending budget on solving problems rather than identifying/quantifying the issues they face.

Further reading

Pensions Dashboard Ready Administration– a Utopia, or can it actually happen?

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Your Quarterly Pensions Update Q3 2020

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‘Superfunds’ – The Pensions Regulator’s guidance for trustees

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