I’ll be promoting National Pension Tracing Day all this month. Let’s hope we can find a way to get the National broadcasters interested in the issue.
Alan Morahan has got the backing of many of the large insurers and I met with him and his team yesterday to see what I can do to help.
What will make this campaign succeed?
My answer to that question is simple. We don’t need convincing within our pension world that we need to find the £20bn+ of DC pension pots that have gone missing. But we need to convince the public that there are things they can do to find their lost pots and organise their later life financial affairs better. We need the support of Paul and Martin Lewis, the Sun , Mirror, Mail and the Star. Well done to the Daily Express which has already run a peice last month.
We need this campaign to feature on broadcast news and it needs to trend on social media. We need our household names to talk of it, our Ros Altmanns, our Tom McPhails and our Pension Minister.
The DWP and the Pensions Regulator, the Treasury and the FCA need to see value in this campaign. Hopefully it will stir the loins of Government to bring forward a National Pension Tracing Service, we shouldn’t forget the DWP has been running a limited tracing service since 2016.
Of course we were supposed to have a pension finding service as the flagship of our pension dashboards. We know that when we get these dashboards they will be able to search for our pensions like Google searches for keywords. That is the future.
But every year, 700,000 members of the UK public start spending their pension savings and most do so without proper information of what they’ve saved and what their entitlements are. But people do remember where they have worked and generally remember the point of sale for the private pensions they started (with a cheque and a direct debit). What has happened since is that they have moved house, rendering the primary correspondence address redundant, forgotten to inform their pension provider of their new address, found that their pension provider no longer trades under its old name, discover their old company is no longer trading under its old name and given up on ever finding their pension rights again. That is not a good user journey – infact it’s rubbish.
But we are all identifiable and so are our pension pots and if we can persevere and follow a simple plan to its end, we can find the pots of our youth which are hopefully now pots of our later age with quite some money in them. The prize is usually worth it. Alan Morahan told me of someone involved with the campaign who uncovered £23,000 owing to him from a pot he’d forgotten about.
Tracing should not be contingent on consolidation
Importantly, the National Pension Tracing Agency campaign is not being linked to pension consolidation, it is simply helping people find their pensions. In my experience, most people simply to feel they need to know what they’ve got before taking next steps and too much tracing has been linked to commercial activity – not all of it – proper.
My personal experience of finding and valuing my pension rights was so awful that I decided to set up AgeWage as a result. We will be using the learnings we get from this campaign to help our users to find pensions and value them, independently of any conversation about consolidation. Consolidation is a separate subject , tracing should not be contingent on consolidation
What can you do?
Get in touch with Alan Morahan or drop me a line for an introduction (email@example.com). If you are a journalist and want to run a story on this, then now is the time. If you are in PR and want to help with spreading the word, now is the time.
If you are interested in contributing money towards the campaign and becoming a named or un named sponsor, get in touch with the teamnow.
Most of all, spread the news on your networks.