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Pensions 'capacity crunch' on the horizon

More than 80% of pensions-focused businesses expect the volume of changes affecting pensions to damage services they provide over the coming year, a survey suggests.

The poll of just over 100 members of pension funds and businesses providing services to pension funds conducted by the National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF), also found respondents were most worried about the introduction of automatic enrolment.
NAPF chief executive Joanne Segars said the pensions sector was facing a “capacity crunch”.  
“The NAPF and its members have worked hard to shape and deliver effective reforms that bring positive results for pension savers, but this stack of change threatens our members’ ability to continue to deliver business as usual,” she said.
“We welcomed automatic enrolment and our members have led the way with great success despite the challenges it presented.  The ambition behind all these various changes is to be applauded, but in attempting to do so much in such a short period of time we risk not delivering the very best outcomes for workers and savers.  
“This is too important to rush.  We need to press pause, prioritise what really matters and deliver automatic enrolment effectively – making sure we build the very strongest foundation on which to build sustainable and positive change for the future.”

IFA concerns
In related news, a poll of more than 260 independent financial advisors found 89% were concerned employers lacked the knowledge to make informed decisions about appropriate auto-enrolment solution for their employees.
The research published by provider NOW: Pensions also found 65% of advisors think employers are disengaged with auto-enrolment.
NOW: Pensions chief executive officer Morten Nilsson said providers, the Government and the Pensions Regulator needed to work together to ensure that only high quality schemes with low charges were permitted into the auto enrolment marketplace.
“Employers would then be on a firmer footing to tackle auto-enrolment with greater confidence.” he said.