Say hello to the UK’s new pension dashboards
Have you ever wanted a centralised, organised and highly efficient platform that lets you manage and keep an eye on your pension facts and figures? Well, the pensions dashboard is set to turn that vision into a reality by 2019.
Pensions Minister, Guy Opperman, confirmed in December 2018 that the innovative scheme has been given the green light. However, the concept of a one-stop pensions management centre has been an on and off initiative for some time now. It seems that this time, the project’s developers are serious about launching the solution soon.
What you can expect
This new online service will let individuals view all their retirement savings and pension details in a convenient and instant manner. Expect to be able to see how much you have across multiple schemes and enjoy a greater sense of control and engagement with your pensions.
The Minister said that “Pensions dashboards are another major milestone in our radical pension reforms, harnessing innovative technology to benefit savers. Plain pensions information at the touch of a screen will ensure better-informed, more engaged savers and help many more people to plan effectively for retirement.”
Multiple dashboards are planned to be introduced within the following years subject to the necessary consumer protection being in place. Overall, pensions dashboards can grant people access to accurate, easy to understand and secure information and show people a clear picture of how much they have in their pension pots as well as what to expect once they’ve entered retirement.
In addition, the dashboard’s features could put pension holders in control of when and how they check their data, including the details of who has access to it. People may also be able to find their ‘lost’ pension pots without having to deal with conventional processes that can be time-consuming and arduous.
Look forward to sound support
The first pension dashboard will reportedly be hosted by the new Single Financial Guidance Body (SFGB) and funded by the pensions industry, though state pension data may not immediately be available through the SFGB pensions dashboard. The government has committed to making information available at a later stage.
If everything pans out, it’s a big step forward. Many pensioners and industry leaders alike are rooting for improved IT functionality across the board as a means of encouraging good decision making and letting pension savers utilise their money more effectively.
SFGB, which aims to be fully operational by this year, will be bringing the debt advisory, money and pensions guidance features of the Money Advisory Service, Pensions Advisory Service and Pension Wise together and on top of this, its permit will include convening and stewarding a pensions dashboard delivery group of various experts, industry leaders and government members in order to facilitate the implementation of this exciting new technology.
There are several concerns when it comes to the incorporation of the dashboard concept. For one, it will initially not include State Pension entitlements and this means that, in the meantime, users will still need to refer to different websites for a full financial overview. This state pension omission has attracted criticism from a few quarters, who argue that the initiative may as well be delayed until the integration of the state pension can be secured to provide a proper “one-stop shop”.
State pensions understandably make up a significant portion of the retirement income picture so there’s a concern that leaving this aspect out could form a false impression of the overall income of users.