As employers are exploring new ways to manage the cost and risk of their employee pensions and benefits packages and ensure they’re meeting the diverse needs of a changing workforce, many are considering pensions in the context of broader workplace savings.
There are several significant trends in employee pensions and benefits which are driving new and innovative approaches to benefit provision.
- New legislation, including tax changes for higher earners, the reduction in pension tax relief, removal of the default retirement age, and - most significantly - the introduction of auto-enrolment, is forcing employers to rethink current approaches to pensions and broader reward.
- The well-established shift from defined benefit (DB) to defined contribution (DC) provision is continuing to accelerate.
- Sponsors are re-evaluating their DC arrangements as evidence continues to emerge that many employees do not recognise the value of DC provision, do not understand how much they need to save to produce an adequate income in retirement, and do not have access to the right information and education to help them make informed decisions.
- Employers are recognising that to attract and retain employees it's important to meet the needs of employees at different stages of their work / life cycles.
Navigating your way through the complex issues surrounding auto-enrolment and workplace pensions and savings can be quite a challenge. To help you, the Mercer Workplace Savings team have shared their thoughts on what to look out for and why – and also what to avoid.
Key issues companies are facing
Why a corporate platform
Why Mercer Workplace Savings
MERCER WORKPLACE SAVINGS
'BEST OF BREED' PENSIONS AND SAVINGS PLATFORM
MERCER WORKPLACE SAVINGS
'BEST OF BREED' INVESTMENT SOLUTION
Mercer workplace savings - a new approach to pensions and savings
Recorded: 12 May 2011
Employers are facing very real and increasing challenges in employee pension and benefit provision. These include concerns about the growing costs and risks of their pension and benefit packages and how they can continue to make these packages relevant to and valued by today’s workforce. These concerns are set against a backdrop of legislative change, including auto enrolment, the variable performance of members’ investments and the need for more flexibility in meeting employees’ wider savings needs
HOW WE CAN HELP
To help you deal with these complex and rapidly evolving issues, we've developed a unique workplace savings solution to address any concerns you may have regarding reduced employee engagement in the wake of recession, help manage the cost and risk of your pension and benefit arrangements, and make these relevant for today's and tomorrow's workforce.
"Best of Breed"solutions for pensions, savings and more.
MERCER WORKPLACE SAVINGS®
If you want to help your employees benefit from pensions, savings and other investments, you'll know this is becoming increasingly complex to manage – due to a range of issues including auto-enrolment, the end of the default retirement age, tax changes for higher earners, reduced employee engagement in the wake of recession, and concerns about how best to manage the cost and risk of pensions and benefit arrangements, and make these relevant for today's and tomorrow's workforce.
What many organisations are looking for is a comprehensive solution that meets their compliance needs, reduces costs and risks, and aims to achieve the best possible outcomes for employees, now and in the future. So, to give you a clearer picture of the issues surrounding workplace pensions and savings solutions, we've created a range of information covering workplace savings schemes and why you should consider introducing one, our workplace savings solution and why it could be right for you, and what makes our solution Best of Breed.
"Best of Breed" solutions for pensions, savings and more
Why choose Mercer Workplace Savings?
Why Best of Breed?
"BEST OF BREED" SOLUTION FOR PENSIONS, SAVINGS AND MORE
Mercer Workplace Savings is a flexible, cost-effective, modular pensions and savings solution which enables you to meet the changing needs of your workforce in saving for retirement and other significant life events.
The Mercer Workplace Savings solution combines providers, technologies, governance, consultancy and services that have all been clearly identified as Best of Breed. So, whether you're developing a new reward strategy to meet the diverse needs of your employee profile, preparing for auto-enrolment, or taking the first step on a benefits journey, we can help to meet your needs.
Following a rigorous two-year assessment process, we selected Friends Life, Standard Life and Zurich as our providers. We chose them on the basis of their financial strength, the range and quality of their products and solutions, their commitment to the UK pensions market, and their ongoing investment in technology to support the development of broader savings platforms.
By combining these leading providers' pensions and savings products and state-of-the-art technologies with our own market-leading expertise and experience in consulting, outsourcing and investments, we've created a flexible, modular pension and savings solution enabling you to:
- Increase the perceived value of your pensions and benefit provision, while managing the associated costs and risks.
- Facilitate better outcomes for your employees.
- Respond to emerging pensions and benefits legislation with a solution that can evolve in line with changing needs.
Mercer Workplace Savings allows you, your sponsors and trustees to choose between a bundled pensions and savings solution, or an investment-only solution:
- Our bundled solution combines a full suite of pensions and other savings products, overlaid with Mercer consulting and governance. Recognising that you may not want to introduce the full range of products available to employees from the outset, the solution allows for single or multiple products with the flexibility to add more as required. And even with a single product on the platform, you still benefit from all the solution's other features.
- For pension scheme sponsors and trustees, we also offer an investment-only solution enabling you to benefit from access to our investment governance and a range of high quality Mercer funds.
WHY CHOOSE MERCER WORKPLACE SAVINGS®?
Mercer Workplace Savings is a complete solution combining the best platforms and products from leading providers with our unparalleled experience and deep expertise in the corporate pensions and savings market.
By adopting the Mercer Workplace Savings solution, you can expect to benefit from a combination of reduced cost and risk exposure, and a solution that delivers now and in the future, and aims to achieve high quality outcomes for your employees.
Reduced cost and risk exposure
The strength of the Mercer brand and our scale of distribution have enabled us to negotiate competitive pricing with our providers. These cost savings are used to provide additional services that add value for you and your members, and enhance their experience of the plan.
Our diligence in selecting our providers means you benefit from a whole of market review and contracting with your selected provider with reduced investment in time and cost. And you're also assured a high quality of service, through robust service level agreements which carry penalties for non-performance.
A solution now and for the future
Our providers are committed to continuing to provide market-leading products and investment in their technology platforms, ensuring they stay at the cutting edge. Our flexible solution will therefore remain relevant and adaptable to your and your employees' emerging needs.
High quality outcomes for employees
Both you and your employees can gain access to Mercer's award-winning intellectual capital and funds normally only available to institutional investors. Your employees will also have easy online access to creative, user-friendly and intuitive communication, education and modelling tools alongside market-leading products to help them make informed decisions.
What more do you need to know?
So that you fully understand the issues surrounding Mercer Workplace Savings and the benefits of our solution, we've created a range of resources which you can access via the links below.
Frequently asked questions
To find out more about Mercer Workplace Savings, or for answers to specific questions about our solution, please speak to your Mercer Relationship Manager or contact Emma Douglas on +44 (0) 20 7178 7253
WHY 'BEST OF BREED'
The Mercer Workplace Savings solution combines providers, technologies, governance, consultancy and services that have all been clearly identified as Best of Breed. So what do we mean by this?
There are many reasons why we consider Mercer Workplace Savings to be Best of Breed – some of which may only become apparent when we begin to discuss the solution with you. These though are some of the most important.
We undertook a two-year whole of market search to identify the best available providers, based on their financial strength, commitment to the market, breadth of products, technology, educational tools, IT security, data protection, people and services. Each provider therefore offers a wide range of products and services, backed by educational material, modelling tools and transactional facilities so your employees can learn, plan and do.
Our investment solutions offer flexible contribution levels and a good blend of risk and return, which match the requirements of your different types of members. These include those wanting access to the widest choice of funds within different asset classes; those wanting help in selecting between a narrower range of products; and the vast majority of members who just want something done for them, for whom we've created a keenly priced, low volatility default fund offering good returns.
Against the backdrop of auto-enrolment, our providers offer preferential pricing, strong risk management procedures, and service levels matching the best in the industry, backed by penalties for non-performance.
At retirement services
Every year, members lose out because they're unable to access the best annuity rates in the market. We therefore offer members an open market option so they can get the best income available throughout their retirement.
Right from the start, we'll work with you to identify which of our providers and which products best suits your needs. Your employees can then choose from pension, savings and retirement options meeting their short, medium and long-term needs. And, as well as future-proofing your product choices by continuing to develop our investments, we'll provide ongoing support and governance services including continuously monitoring our providers and the rest of the market, to confirm they're meeting their service level agreements and maintaining their market-leading positions - which they're contractually committed to do.
To find out more about Mercer Workplace Savings, or for answers to specific questions about our solution, please speak to your Mercer Relationship Manager or contact Emma Douglas on +44 (0) 20 7178 7253.
Issued in the United Kingdom by Mercer Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Registered in England No. 984275. Registered Office: 1 Tower Place West, Tower Place, London, EC3R 5BU.