Pensions Portal’s bid to cut the jargon

Pensions Portal’s bid to cut the jargon

Pensions engagement is still lacking among people in the run-up to retirement so the industry must collaborate better to help people make the right decisions, Andy Kirby has said.

Mr Kirby, managing director of newly launched The Pensions Portal, said he was “on a mission to solve the issues the industry and people face in the run-up to retirement”.

These issues include a lack of information, poor engagement, lack of proper signposting to “really good information” and far too much jargon in the wake-up packs currently being given to people, Mr Kirby said.

He said: “Approximately 400,000 people in defined contribution pensions are reaching maturity each year but are non-advised, and there is not enough effort made to properly engage these people well ahead of their retirement.

“It is not good enough for these people to simply get the obligatory provider-led information as part of the second line of defence once they retire.

“People should have good, creative, engaging content six months before their retirement date.”

The Pensions Portal aims to help fill the gap caused by pension freedoms by giving employers and providers a third-party accredited site to provide guidance and information about all the choices available to consumers about their pensions.

Mr Kirby said: “Better information leads to better decisions and ultimately a better retirement.”

Mr Kirby is the founder and co-owner of adviser hub Adviser Home, an online business development portal for advisers.

He is also founder and owner of Mint Wealth Management, which focuses on financial planning for people aged 50 and above.

In May, FTAdviser revealed Mr Kirby had joined forces with training and technology experts to create the technology platform.

This portal, which can be white-labelled, provides all the necessary risk warnings to the client, such as how to spot scams, using animations to help bring the message to life.

According to Ian Beestin, marketing director of The Pensions Portal, it is not just jargon that needs to be tackled but the way in which the information is presented to people.

He said: “We looked at the Ideas 42 document from the Association of British Insurers (ABI) and have tried to incorporate these ideas in our filming and animations.

“We do not want to be introducing fear to people but to be positive about pensions, interpreting often-complicated subjects such as tax in a way that will be useful to consumers.”

The Ideas 42 document, Freedom and Choice in Pensions: A Behavioural Perspective, looked at natural behavioural bias and how the industry could work together to overcome such potential problems.

It stated: “While we can do little to change the way people’s minds work, there is much we can do to change the environment in which they are making decisions.”

David Trenner, technical director of Intelligent Pensions, said it was not easy to create jargon-free wake-up packs for consumers.