Scottish Widows launches £50m plan to improve services and adviser support

Scottish Widows launches £50m plan to improve services and adviser support

Scottish Widows has launched a £50m programme to improve its products and services, as well as improve its adviser support.

The provider also said it will create a range of new digital services over the next 18 months.

Called Driving Pensions Value, the programme of investment will see the launch of a new suite of digital tools for employers and employees.

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Ronnie Taylor, pensions director at Scottish Widows, said: “The pensions industry has been shock absorbing an unprecedented amount of change over the past few years, rightly putting the spotlight on value for money and delivering good outcomes for savers at retirement.

“By investing in an intensive improvement programme Driving Pensions Value, we are streamlining our business to meet the evolving needs of advisers, employers and individuals, and concentrating on what really matters to them by removing complexity, and increasing engagement.

“We’ve already laid the foundations for this work, and it will be our singular focus this year.”

According to a spokesman for Scottish Widows, the “streamlining” will not include redundancies.

Within the next 18 months, the company will overhaul its investment fund range to ensure that scheme members have access to market-leading funds, including the introduction of actively managed portfolios.

The company will also make a series of operational and service enhancements to support advisers and simplify transactions.

Earlier this month, Scottish Widows announced that it was removing all exit fees across its workplace pensions ahead of the introduction of a cap.

Adviser view

Steven Robinson, managing director of Bristol-based Clarke Robinson, said: “It is a lot of money, but it may be too late to recapture the market with IFAs who are already using providers with more advanced systems.”