The pensions debate is swirling around and around and every aspect of potential reform is being scrutinized by industry experts willing to set out where they think the future of pensions should go.
The trouble is sometimes discussion about the subject can feel like information overload from a handful of specialists in their field, while those with smaller voices may feel they go unheard.
Well all that is about to change, and if you’ve never taken it before this may be your opportunity to get involved in helping to shape the way in which the pensions industry is reformed and delivered to consumers.
The Department of Work and Pensions wants the views of intermediaries in an effort to communicate with all sides of the pension debate, and recognising the need to involve IFAs, the government is keen to engage with them on the issue of pensions.
It is possible you have studied all the options open to your clients, analysed the issues relevant to each individual and made your mind up as to the best course of action ahead of the Turner Commission’s report on pensions reform.
And there are a whole host of subjects to address, from compulsion, to state benefits, to employer-sponsored pension schemes and raising the retirement age.
All of these elements perhaps need to be considered. However, perhaps what many people have so far failed to address is how best to get the attention of the consumer, when it comes to highlighting the need for retirement planning.
Every intermediary knows no consumer really wants to put money away for their retirement, but it is a necessity many simply do not address. Apathy towards doing so is far from the best description of sentiments and there is a worry consumers will only really take notice of their financial needs when they are compelled to do so.
What is needed is constructive dialogue from the front line: advisers know what their clients’ worries will be and whether they can afford the raft of changes which many firms consider absolute necessary for the future of pensions, as well as being are informed consumers yourselves.
Financial advisers also know the limits of consumer marketing campaigns and what might be required to catch their attention, but are rarely given an opportunity to speak out above the lobbyists or loudest voices.
But make sure you do speak out this time. The DWP wants to know what you think, and we’re gathering your views to share in the pensions debate.
The attached page link for IFA Voice: Your Top 5 concerns for the future of pensionsexplains more specifically some of the issues you may feel need addressing, as well as setting out what we need from you to contribute to discussions.
They are just some of the issues facing the pensions industry ahead of A-Day and in reality probably over the next decade.
But all of your views will be collected together all your responses and passed on to the representatives of the DWP. You might not believe you can government policy but your views can help to influence its future.
If you have any comments you would like to add to this story or would like to speak to its author about a similar subject, telephone Matthew West on 020 7484 9893 or email [email protected].IFAonline
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