Life and pensions round up

Five-star providers: Scottish Life back on top as five-star category shrinks by one

A slightly smaller number of providers appear in this year’s top-rated service category – 14 compared with 15 last year.

Scottish Life regained its place as the most popular life and pensions service provider, having come second last year after four consecutive years with a top score.

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This stellar effort, combined with good performance by Bright Grey, also a five-star winner and Royal London Asset Management, helped parent Royal London win Company of the Year.

Partnership, came a close second, now having won five stars in a row, with two four-star wins before that. Partnership was followed by Axa Wealth, including Elevate – all previous five-star winners.

New entrants included Bright Grey and Aviva, which were both four-star winners last year.

Holding on to last year’s five-star status are MetLife Europe, Axa Wealth Int., Just Retirement, PruProtect, Pru, MGM Advantage, LV=, L&G and Exeter FF.

Four-star providers: Ageas and Skandia join ranks from different directions

The number of four-star winners fell by three, from 10 to just seven this year. Ageas, a former five-star winner dropped into the category, while Skandia was promoted from last year’s three-star rating.

Zurich Life, Paymentshield and Standard Life all held on to their four-star status from last year.

Rowanmoor was also promoted from last year’s three-star rating, while new entrant Engage Mutual Assurance did well in its first appearance in the Service Awards with good service.

Three-star providers: Two slip from good to average

Eight companies made it into the three-star winners category, showing average service standards.

This is down from ten last year, with two companies in the category being demotions while one was a promotion.

The remainder were all non-movers. Top of the three star ranking is Friends Life, slipping down from four stars last year, after promotion from three stars.

As Friends Provident, it has held the four star spot four three years after four years as a five star winner.

Second place was taken by The James Hay Partnership, which has shown resilience with a three star ranking, albeit lower down the group, last year.

James hay has shown steady progress after two years as a two stars and one as a one star provider. Other three-star candidates who appeared in this ranking last year, include Canada Life, Scottish Provident, PruHealth, AJ Bell Sipp Centre and Holloway Friendly Society.

Cirencester Friendly Society is a new entrant, having been demoted from four stars last year.

However, this year’s performance seems to be a return to form, after several years as a three star candidate.

Two-star providers: Poor service firms halved

The two-star category for poor service is thankfully a smaller group than it was last year, with only seven companies, compared to 12 last year.