Webinar on demand – How to make your scheme dashboard ready

In our recent webinar, Angela Bell, Industry Outreach Lead at The Pensions Regulator joins First Actuarial’s Robert Wakefield and Claire Fuller. Together, they provide an overview of pensions dashboards and discuss how you can make your scheme dashboard-ready.

First proposed in 2016, dashboards have been a subject of lively debate across the industry. And they are fast becoming a reality. On 16 June 2022, Pensions Age reported that The Pensions Dashboard Programme (PDP) has successfully tested an end-to-end version of the dashboard ecosystem.

With the development of the pensions dashboard ecosystem proceeding at such a rapid pace, trustees need to start making their scheme dashboard-ready.

We are running a series of three webinars designed to give you all the information you need about pensions dashboards and how to prepare for them. The webinars will feature speakers from First Actuarial and a range of industry groups.

The first webinar – How to make your scheme dashboard ready – took place on 14 June 2022. In the webinar, Angela Bell, Industry Outreach Lead at The Pensions Regulator joins First Actuarial’s Robert Wakefield and Claire Fuller. They provide an overview of pensions dashboards and discuss how you can make your scheme dashboard-ready.

First of all, does your scheme fall within the scope of the Pensions Dashboard Programme? The first iteration includes all UK-based pensions, including the State Pension, Defined Benefit pensions (including cash balance schemes) and Defined Contribution pensions.

How will the pensions dashboard work?

This is where it can get complicated. To provide a clear picture, Claire Fuller, dashboard lead for First Actuarial gives an outline of how pensions dashboards will work to give individuals a full picture of their pension savings. (For more detail, watch the webinar recording below.)

She explains that when an individual first registers, they will provide information to identify themselves. By doing so, they’re giving consent for that personal data to be shared. The data is passed on to providers of all schemes in scope. The providers then check whether that individual is a member of their scheme. Matching is based on criteria agreed by trustees. Once matched, the scheme will provide a dataset, and the member will be able to request benefit information and view it on the dashboard.

At present, we expect the information to pass through an integrated service provider (ISP). The benefits of this approach include:

  • The ISP manages the volume of data coming from the dashboard to scheme administration, so day-to-day work is not disrupted
  • No data is stored in the dashboard; it is only viewed on the dashboard
  • The approach is similar to that of auto-enrolment, so it is proven and low-risk.



The role of The Pensions Regulator

Angela Bell explained that The Pensions Regulator aims to maximise scheme compliance with dashboard duties. They are putting a targeted communications programme in place to give all industry stakeholders the right guidance and support.

Initial guidance in June is designed to help trustees get ready. It will outline legal duties and provide a timeline of what they must do. Follow-up guidance later this year will reflect final regulations and technical standards.

Since this webinar was recorded, The Pensions Regulator has published its initial guidance, which marks the beginning of a full communication programme to raise awareness of trustee responsibilities and drive progress. Read the guidance here.

In terms of compliance, The Pensions Regulator aims to take a proportionate and reasonable approach except where noncompliance is wilful and deliberate. They will set this out in more detail once Parliament has passed the regulations.

Timescales of the Pensions Dashboard Programme

The pensions dashboard will be implemented in a series of waves, starting with the largest schemes (those with more than 1,000 active or deferred members) from June 2023 to October 2024.

This gives the first tranche, the largest master trusts, a staging date of June 2023. By that date, they will have to

a. Comply with the regulations

b. Be connected to the dashboard and ready to process requests and return data where a match is identified.

Trustees should note that the process of connection will clearly need to start prior to the staging date.

What can trustees start doing now?

Irrespective of their staging data, trustees should start preparing to be dashboard-ready now. They should:

  1. Discuss it as a board agenda item
  2. Work with scheme administrators to agree an approach
  3. Consider what the scheme’s matching criteria will be and what needs to be done to make that data available, accurate and accessible. Read the PASA guidance on data matching.

Contact us to register for other webinars in the series.

Any questions or comments about this article?

Get in touch with the author, Robert Wakefield.

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