Turning auto-enrolment information into knowledge


I  spend far too much of my life on the Pension Regulator’s website trying to narrow the information available to make people knowledgeable. It isn’t easy.


 <iframe src=”//www.googletagmanager.com/ns.html?id=GTM-NQPC6C” height=”0″ width=”0″ style=”display:none;visibility:hidden”></iframe> From the moment you hit the site you are confronted by questions

engagement screen

 Note – no confusing questions, no scary language and two clear calls to action. People are being asked to get the knowledge, not bombarded with information.


So let’s assume that people finally hit the right question on the Regulator’s site “what do I need to do and by when?”
This is what they are faced with
Get started

<img src=”http://uk.sitestat.com/tpr/main/s?name=home.workplace_pensions_law_has_changed_act_now.page” height=”1″ width=”1″ alt=”site stat” />

Too much information – no knowledge being imparted – no relationship established

This is what should be happening- what happens if you press “get started” on http://www.pensionplaypen.com.

let's get started

Let’s be clear, you cannot educate people without first engaging with them and you can’t make people knowledgeable by throwing information at them.

People when they make an enquiry digitally expect to have a pleasant time and to be able to go at their own pace through a clearly defined process that takes them from A to B via C and D.

It is this simple courtesy that is lacking on the Regulator’s site. I am told the site will be simplified soon. Let’s hope they simplify in the way we suggest.

The world is full of information and most of it makes sense when it is framed so people can act on it. There is pure nonsense but we are usually quite good at spamming it.

The way we get people to be knowledgeable is through helping them make choices that make sense; the do this and that will happen type of choice.

I use the Regulator’s site as an example of digital advice not guidance. The Regulator is always telling you what to do but never explaining the consequences of the decisions you are making. The headmaster’s stick is being waved in the background and the learning is by rote. In this kind of classroom , learning is neither interesting nor long-lasting.

Which is why, for all its good intentions, the Pension Regulator’s website is potentially harmful to auto-enrolment.

By comparison, the approach to digital guidance that we and many other private sites are adopting is creating engagement and creating interest in what auto-enrolment is really about, which is turning on generations of workers to saving meaningfully for later life.

To do this, you need to engage with the employers who manage the process and those employers need to see auto-enrolment as a way of sorting out retirement and not just a short term compliance problem.

Here are NEST’s numbersauto-enrolment more popular

Where is this enthusiasm for auto-enrolment reflected on the Pension Regulator’s website?


all in

This is what is needed, people who know they’re in to something good and are happy to stay in as contributions ramp up. They need to know their workplace pension is good for their money and that all this saving will help them later in life

If we want to make people knowledgeable about auto-enrolment, we need to engage and educate and empower. We need to turn information into knowledge and do so with a sense of fun.

If you are an employer or adviser or if you are an accountant and/or run a payroll bureau or produce auto-enrolment software, or if you are at the DWP or the Pension Regulator, I hope this blog cheered you up a little (on wet February Monday!).

About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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