Published by Nick Griggs on
The charity already operated a stakeholder scheme with some 800 active members. Some eligible employees had historically chosen cash in lieu of employer pension contributions, an option offered pre auto-enrolment in recognition of low pay levels in the social care sector. A further significant number of relief workers were not previously eligible for sponsored pension provision.
After analysing the earnings profile of the non-pensioned workforce, the stakeholder scheme was closed to new joiners with effect from the charity’s ‘staging date’. The charity therefore needed a new workplace scheme to fulfil its auto-enrolment duties.
Its main objectives for the new scheme and how these were overcome were as follows:
Recognising the dispersed nature of the workforce and the fact that the charity employs some staff members with learning disabilities, a customised communication strategy was a key objective. We worked with the charity on a thorough communications campaign, including many anticipated FAQs and the charity supplemented these with communications prepared in accessible form.
Having reached its staging date, and initially postponing the assessment of non-pensioned employees, United Response auto-enrolled some 1,451 employees into the new workplace scheme in the first month of implementation, October 2013.
“We found ourselves unable to extend our existing pension scheme for all our employees under auto-enrolment. However, Barnett Waddingham’s expertise helped guide us through the challenges we faced. Today we are auto-enrolment compliant, and our non-pensioned employees have access to a new high quality workplace pension scheme offering flexibility and access to information and tools to help them understand and manage their retirement savings. ”Diane Lightfoot, Director of Communications