I attended a meeting for potential pension dashboard providers yesterday. I sensed a new confidence among the PDP team, especially from boss Chris Curry. For the first time I believed that the dashboards was going to happen and that when it happened – they would be a success
Here are seven positive messages I gleaned from yesterday’s call.
Reason one – timelines
The “dashboards available point” (DAP) is now firmly set in 2023 with the PDP apologising for not being firmer on when in 2023. BAU will be commencing in 2024. These timelines are no longer slipping, they are firming up.
Reason two- testing
Like Crossrail, most of the infrastructure is in place and the difference is that the dashboard is at the beginning of a long test period (hopefully we will be traveling on Crossrail on 24th May (Tuesday)
I suspect that as the DAP draws nearer, excitement will increase (think London Olympics 2021)
Reason three – Pensions Minister adamant
“There is no place to hide for data-shy pension schemes!” That was the parting shot from the Pensions Minister at last week’s Pension PlayPen “audience”. Pension Schemes are insurers operating personal pensions are waking up to the fact that the dashboard is happening and they will be fined if they don’t meet their mandatory responsibilities.
Reason four – it will be a consumer dashboard, not a marketing tool.
The big news (for me) yesterday, is that the operators of pension dashboards will be able to fetch and display people’s entitlements but they will not be able to see them. Unless- that is, the person with the data, chooses to share it.
This privacy clause means that the dashboard becomes a utility first and a marketing tool, only as an “opt in”. I am sure that most people will want to opt-in to explore more functionality and – once they have seen what’s on show – will trust their dashboard provider to help them further, but the right to privacy is a big thing. It will ensure that you are protected from scams and keep the sceptics happy.
Reason five – being a dashboard provider is going to be a tough gig
We heard yesterday about the Design , technical and reporting standards – for providers., Analytics and benchmarking will be to a high standard. The technical bar will be high.
We also heard from the FCA who – once they had mastered the technology of joining, explained the regulatory barriers to being a provider. We won’t know the precise detail for a couple of consultations yet , but it’s clear that many of the requirements for other major regulated activities such as running a master trust or a SIPP, will be transferred across. In the new digital world, managing data is akin to managing money.
The FCA expects to make most approvals within 6 months, if you haven’t got your in 12 months, you won’t be getting it.
Reason six – no exclusivities
In line with the view that these will be a utility for the consumer rather than a marketing tool for the provider, dashboards will not be able to exclude “non-customers”. All dashboards will be open to all people and no dashboards can exclude information on any available data.
White labelling will be allowed but there is still work to be done between the DWP and the FCA on this. The FCA says this will be covered in their next consultation.
Reason seven – aspiration to integrate
There is an aspiration tat pension dashboards will allow integration with wider dashboards. Pension dashboards cannot sit alongside other forms of information (yet) , But the PDP assure us that this will develop over time in line with progress of open finance.