No dash in the dashboard


The DWP has published it’s dashboard consultation response and the question is “what’s new “.

The short answer is “not much”. Though we now have a picture of multiple commercial  dashboards in 2019, they will still be dependent on a single pension finder service now “owned” by the “industry” from whom data will be granted.

What has been dropped is the pretence of a procurement exercise, the providers who own Origo – will effectively be paymasters. The DWP appear to have given them the single pension finder without more ado. The concept of “open pensions” – for all the fine words, is still a distance away.

This will work well for that part of the industry that works effectively with Origo but not so well with the Third Party Administrators of occupational schemes and master trusts.

What has been added is a chance for FCA approved dashboard providers to set up shop in 2019, though what exactly they’ll be allowed to do is not clear. Nor is it clear that any business will set up without being able to construct a business plan based on known knowns.

One of the known knowns is that no-one’s in a great hurry.

The Government is still talking of three to four years before you and I can use a dashboard to get a holistic view of all our pensions. Just when the State Pension will integrate isn’t clear but presumably some time after the end of 2023.

The idea of dashboards being able to integrate to providers themselves , avoiding the fees, outages and potential restrictions of the industry delivery group’s pension finder service, is all but ignored.

In initial responses to the Government’s dashboard paper there were common themes.

Bewilderment that we will have to wait 3-4 years to get a fully baked dashboard.

astonishment  that charge disclosure will not for part of the initial dashboards

concern that the given reason for the delays is that our data is not in good enough shape to share with us

In case we were under the impression Jo thought this an acceptable position, she added

Add to this a general lack of excitement as old news was recycled. This can best be illustrated with no tweets , as the dull thud of the consultation response hit the mat.

Jo has elaborated on these points in her FT article “Pension Schemes given up to four years to setup dashboards”. 

Weary before we start

For the further four year’s gestation, there is remarkably little to show. The hope of a PenTech surge to deliver people a single view of their retirement affairs is fading. I will be well into my 60s before I see a proper dashboard and I was but 54 when I first got excited by the concept,

The bright innovation that I see everywhere around me, seems to be absent from the DWP’s view of the world. Though Pension Bee and Smart are regularly mentioned in the dashboard, their radical suggestions have not been incorporated, the dashboard will be for the providers, by the providers and nothing else but the providers – at least for now.

I am weary of this dashboard project which gets in the way of the innovation I and others want to see.

I hope it delivers, but for many, like me – it is already obsolete. The white heat of British Fintech is burning strong, but right now, it doesn’t burn for a dashboard with no dash.

About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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1 Response to No dash in the dashboard

  1. Pingback: This new year – let’s know what pensions cost. | The Vision of the Pension Playpen

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