UK government moves to protect pension savers

Pension scheme governance

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The UK government has unveiled an initiative to increase the standard of governance across pensions schemes, in an effort to protect workplace pension savers.

As part of an effort to drive best practice across pension schemes, The Pensions Regulator’s 21 century trusteeship campaign will directly target trustees, scheme managers, employers and advisors with communications and resources to emphasise the fundamental importance of good pension scheme governance.

The information – on themes including training, managing risk and decision-making – will outline how people involved in the running of schemes can take action to meet expected standards and what measures the regulator will take if they don’t improve.

The move comes after research by the government revealed that many trustee boards, particularly in small and medium schemes, have previously failed to act on its codes and guidance to meet good standards of governance.

“Good governance is the bedrock of a well-run pension scheme and there is a clear link between good governance and good fund performance,” said Anthony Raymond, acting executive director for regulatory policy at The Pensions Regulator.

“It is not a ‘nice to have,’ but an essential part of effective scheme management – for all schemes.”

“Pension schemes should have a skilled and engaged board, led by an effective chair, have robust risk management in place and good relationships with advisers and third parties,” Raymond continued.

“We have set out our intention to be clearer, quicker and tougher. This campaign is one of the ways we are delivering this commitment and I would like to see all trustees visit the new campaign web page to ensure they are doing all they can to safeguard their members’ benefits.

“Those who fail to respond to our more directive approach may face further regulatory action.”

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