Dashboard 60% ready – 1/4 of data missing

Queen Bees – Romi and Reilly

I don’t often publish undigested  press releases but Pension Bee’s analysis of its own data explains itself very well. Most people know who has their money and have their paperwork, but many, myself included  – lose touch with everything from betting to bank accounts and we find remembering our pension policies as easy as remembering last decade’s password!

So long as the primary way of a pension provider keeping in touch is via the letterbox, people will lose touch with their house. Even when the primary point of contact is an email or mobile #, money can get stranded.

The pension dashboard is designed to change all that but when will it be ready? Much as I’d like it to open tomorrow, the thought of half people’s request fo data “returned to sender” makes me realise we need a plan. Read Romi and Clare’s wise words on what such a plan ought to be – inspired of course by the data.


Savers are expected to find just 6/10 pensions on Pensions Dashboard due to poor data quality

Analysis of current pension data quality by PensionBee estimates that savers would find just six out of ten of their pensions upon logging in to the Pensions Dashboard when it launches in the 2020s.

PensionBee, the UK’s leading online pension provider, has found that pension savers would only locate 61% of their pensions when they log in to the Pensions Dashboard for the first time unless drastic data cleansing actions are undertaken by the pensions industry.

Screenshot 2020-02-10 at 13.10.30

To gain an understanding of data quality by provider type, PensionBee analysed the data of over 6,500 instances where it was required to contact a pension provider, in search of a mutual customer’s pension, between July and November 2019.

It looked at the number of pensions that could be matched on first try, those that could be matched based on partial identification, and those that could not be matched despite the belief that a pension pot exists.

PensionBee excluded pensions where it had enriched data, including policy numbers and additional information, which results in a higher location rate for its own customers.

In each instance of this analysis PensionBee used the four key elements of data required to uniquely identify a consumer’s pension: name, date of birth, National Insurance number and address.

Data was supplied in the most up-to-date format, as recently shared by customers, reflecting the level of data accuracy a consumer will use when accessing the dashboard for the first time.

The government plans to use digital ID to identify a consumer’s pension, but this is not likely to be available in time for the launch of the Dashboard in the next few years. Therefore the dashboard will likely provide data to consumers based on matching, much as pension data is shared today.

The findings show a clear distinction in data quality between newer master trusts and older contract-based schemes, differences which can be attributed to the variance in both the quality and availability of scheme data.

Master trusts’ better quality data is driven by factors including the rollout of Auto-Enrolment in 2014, and the use of newer systems and data maintenance protocols, such as GDPR, which greatly benefit consumers and significantly improve the likelihood of finding a pension.

Analysis shows the success rate for major Auto-Enrolment master trusts, NEST, B&CE The People’s Pension, NOW Pensions and Smart Pension, is fairly high. 79% of these pensions were identified on the first try, 94% were identified either fully or partially, and only 6% could not be identified at all.

Of the older providers of contract-based schemes, such as those listed, only 52% of pensions were identified on the first try, 64% were either fully or partially identified, and 36% could not be identified at all.

Clare Reilly, Head of Corporate Development at PensionBee, said:

“By the time it launches, savers will have waited more than 20 years for a dashboard so it needs to be fit for purpose from day one.

“This data should be a huge wake up call to the pensions industry. Those with legacy books of business, spread across systems and geographical locations around the country need to finally get their houses in order. The reputation and future of pensions depend on it.

“Whilst they do this only a staged approach can avoid what would otherwise be certain delay. If we want to launch with the best quality data, it’s clear master trusts lead the way.”

About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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3 Responses to Dashboard 60% ready – 1/4 of data missing

  1. Adrian Boulding says:

    Do any providers still use letterbox as the primary way of keeping in touch? That’s 19th Century technology! Adrian

    • Martin T says:

      Large scale schemes – probably not. Medium / small schemes – some yes. It is 19C technology but it does prompt members to tell us when they have moved as in “I didn’t get my statement” “Well we sent it to 123 Any St” “Oh I left there 9 months ago, didn’t I tell you?”. Where we have tried to introduce email / web access we met a lot of resistance and people deleted or ignored messages so still didn’t get them. I like Ros Altmann’s birthday card idea ‘cos people might actually read that.

  2. henry tapper says:

    Martin – I get annoyed with email too – I agree. I too liked Ros’ birthday card. We can get messaged so many ways, for me the best is the sMS I get each morning from First Direct showing me the ins and outs the day before, and my bank daily balance.

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