Tired of manana?
The Pension dashboard will arrive one day, but when it does it will be a pension finding service.
If what you’re waiting for is a way to bring your pensions together then there are plenty of dashboards around today, from Smart, AgeWage and Pension Bee. The trouble is that all rely on information provided at the snail’s pace dictated by providers.
Pensions aren’t open to consumers as bank accounts are so while we can bank online using a phone, tablet or PC, organising our pension in retirement is still a paper-based affair.
In many ways , the Pension Dashboard has confused the issue. It is as if we have to wait until the dashboard has arrived, to progress the flow of information we need to find the information we need to “get to know our pensions”.
So I was pleased when an email dropped into my inbox calling for the delivery of open pensions alongside and not after the delivery of the dashboard.
Open Pensions can deliver ahead of a dashboard
PensionBee has released a new report exploring the potential for Open Finance in pensions, and calling for regulators to prioritise the initiative before other sectors.
‘Open Pensions and Open Finance: building a better future for UK savers’ highlights how Open Finance can help shape the way millions of UK consumers engage with their finances. In addition, the paper calls for the introduction of Open Pensions to help consumers improve financial decisions and plan for a happy retirement.
The report’s findings suggest that Open Pensions can bring more immediate value to savers than the government-led Pensions Dashboards project, which has one near-term use case – to reunite consumers with ‘lost’ pensions. Instead, ownership through Open Pensions is a distinct and urgently needed policy objective that will drive consumers to take advantage of more digital tools, and prepare for and manage their retirements.
In ‘Open Pensions and Open Finance’, which has garnered support from the UK fintech industry body Innovate Finance, PensionBee calls on the FCA to recognise that Open Pensions and the Pensions Dashboards are for different target groups and should be allowed to develop in parallel rather than sequentially.
Clare Reilly, Head of Corporate Development at PensionBee, commented:
“Lack of engagement with pensions is a ticking time bomb for UK society. If we don’t address this early enough, millions of people could retire into poverty with no guarantees the state can support them. Of all the possible verticals to be brought into Open Finance early, pensions needs to be staged first by every measure: consumers are being asked to take responsibility for their retirement, but yet still have no access to the basic standardised information required to make decisions, like charges or performance. Pensions are the biggest financial asset people have (after a home) and the only vertical where making a small change now can have a big impact later. By mandating pensions to go first in Open Finance, the FCA can bring the urgent regulatory intervention savers need, in a data format they understand, early enough to make a difference.”