Auto-enrolment  

Pensionsync launches auto-enrolment comparison site

Pensionsync launches auto-enrolment comparison site

Fintech firm Pensionsync has launched an auto-enrolment comparison website aimed at unadvised small and micro businesses.

The new site, www.payroll.pensions.market, lists a number of auto-enrolment providers, ranking them according to expert, employee, employer and payroll ratings.

The expert rating, taken from independent ratings provider Defaqto, is given the most weight in each provider's overall score.

Article continues after advert

To qualify to be listed, AE providers must have master trust assurance framework accreditation and be listed on The Pension Regulator's website, or be a prominent FCA-regulated life company.

They must also be open to receiving new members from small businesses, and be in demand from small businesses. The latter point would rule out some of the smaller master trusts.

Will Lovegrove, chief executive of Pensionsync, said his firm launched the website because it saw a gap in the market for small businesses, who did not use financial advisers, and whose accountants did not feel capable to advise on pensions.

He said the website would be free, and would not in itself provide Pensionsync with revenue.

But he said there was a commercial aim.

Pensionsync's main service is to link payroll providers to auto-enrolment pension providers, automating the transmission of data between the two. 

Ease of connection between payroll and provider is included in the ratings criteria, and Mr Lovegrove said the aim is to increase awareness of the value of Pensionsync's service.

"We're doing this to illustrate that there is an emerging new dimension to payroll software and pensions, which is the electronic data interchange, which is what we do," he said. 

However, Mr Lovegrove insisted the fact that his business had a commercial motive did not undermine the accuracy of the ratings.

"It has to be accurate and evenhanded, otherwise it isn't credible," he said.

Another potential conflict was the fact that AE provider Smart Pension owns a small stake in Pensionsync. Mr Lovegrove said the fact that Smart Pension was currently rated as the fourth best AE provider had nothing to do with this relationship.

"We are very, very transparent. We have scored them [Smart Pension] and we've explained that, and we've exposed that for criticism and feedback. And we believe that we've been fair and accurate."

He pointed out that Smart Pension's investment in Pensionsync was approximately 1.1 per cent. "They have no say or influence over our scoring methodology," he said.

Mr Lovegrove added that the website did not provide financial advice, and contained a link to unbiased.com for users considering getting professional advice.

james.fernyhough@ft.com