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Industry warns of danger of “huge missed opportunity” on the Pensions Dashboard

The ABI is responding to a report  from the Work and Pensions Committee into the pension freedom and choice reforms. In relation to recommendations about the future of Pensions Dashboards, Yvonne Braun, ABI Director of Policy, Long-term Savings and Protection, said:

Yvonne Braun

“It is only thanks to the efforts and investment of the pensions industry that we have a prototype and are now able to talk about the practicalities of delivering a pensions dashboard for everyone to use. The industry’s focus in this project has been on how to best serve consumers and we are delighted Government is now taking forward its implementation. The priority must be to get an initial service up and running, supported by legislation compelling all schemes to provide data to the service.

“It may be that an initial publicly hosted service is a pragmatic place to start given the stated aim to deliver a dashboard in 2019. But it would be a huge missed opportunity if we adopt a single dashboard as the final destination. We know that people expect to be able to use sophisticated dashboards in the future, integrated with other services, that only the private sector will be able to provide.”   

Background to the pensions dashboard

In 2016, the ABI accepted the task of project managing the creation of a pensions dashboard prototype for HM Treasury. The prototype was successfully delivered to spec and on time in the spring of 2017 and you can see more about how it worked here. This project was funded by 16 industry participants, with the support of pro bono work from a range of tech firms. In October, the Department for Work and Pensions announced it would now take over the delivery of a pensions dashboard system.

Which? has recently published a report looking at how to make sure Pensions Dashboard work well for consumers, pointing out appropriately regulated private sector dashboards could promote innovation, make it easier for people to find and use dashboards, and be integrated with other services.

Addressing suggestions about a default drawdown option for some savers, Yvonne Braun added:

“Retirement defaults can only ever be the very last resort given people’s wildly varying circumstances, needs and objectives in retirement.

“Government, regulators and the industry all need to help customers make the right decisions for their circumstances. This has to involve the new Single Financial Guidance Body nudging customers to engage with their choices at a much earlier point in their lives, coupled with the Pensions Dashboard giving people a greater sense of ownership over their pension savings. Providers can help by presenting choices in a way that makes it as straightforward as possible for customers to make decisions about how to use their pension savings in retirement.”

Last updated 05/04/2018