Were you present at the Zwitserleven PensioenEvent? The workshop in which we worked with advisers and employers to consider opportunities to make choice guidance a success? This fruitful brainstorming produced nearly 600 opportunities. And we have now elaborated these in a clear summary so you can read up on the most interesting ideas and inputs. The main conclusion? Choice guidance offers opportunities!
The workshop on choice guidance at the Zwitserleven PensioenEvent proved to be a fruitful cross-pollination. Together with employers and advisers, we have put some 600 opportunities on paper.
We summarise the main conclusions below.
By far the most frequently mentioned opportunity is to properly mentor employees through personal interviews. This could take the form of a pension advice call, but also a broader financial planning call outlining the overall picture. This is itself not new, of course, but the opportunities are seen mainly in how to facilitate/finance these conversations. Since cost is often a barrier for a participant, one could think of employer funding (e.g. from flex budget/WKR or as part of an employment condition), but also by making it tax deductible. The legislature could make budget available for this purpose. Another option is to fund the cost once every few years from the pension pot.
Cooperation employer & consultant
A second common thread in the ideas is cooperation in the employer-advisor-performer triangle. Through good cooperation, participants can be guided properly and efficiently. It is often seen as an opportunity, for example, to train an HR officer or a pension expert/knowledge holder within the company. That way, the employer can also play a proper role in choice guidance. In addition, involving the Works Council in this issue can help increase support, awareness and activation.
The plenary information sessions are also still considered very useful. Live, but also definitely digital. Informing participants regularly about pensions and focusing on the important choices will make and keep them better informed. Here, too, there is a joint role for employer, adviser and executor.
Tooling for choice guidance is important, increasingly so. In doing so, user-friendliness is key. The entire pension sector has moved to personal environments in recent years and there is still a huge gain to be made here, especially in terms of ease of use. There is also a huge opportunity to shape the tooling jointly or in conjunction with employer, consultant and executor. Think data access, look-along functions and deep-links. In the ideal situation, tooling for choice guidance is set up in an integrated way.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is very much mentioned as an opportunity for choice guidance. Based on available data, how can we ensure that everyone is approached appropriately, with the right information? This is really in its infancy in the pensions industry. And all legal issues aside, we do see AI as an opportunity for the future.
Besides the general sessions, choice guidance should above all be personal. Many opportunities have to do with personal attention. Approach participants actively and connect them to exchange experiences. A casual setting can contribute to success; consider a drinks or breakfast session. But especially listen to the participants. Engage with each other to find out where their needs are. For example, a survey of employees is a simple way of finding out where gains can be made. And then also deploy different resources for different target groups. Segmentation is a frequently mentioned element. Consider age groups here, but also segmentation by themes such as life events and lifestyle/preferences. Different audiences are triggered or activated differently.
Of course, a lot of great creative ideas for pension communication and choice guidance were jotted down. A selection of good opportunities:
- gamification e.g. a pension board game (life path) or an online pension game (in the portal)
- e-learnings and/or interactive explainer videos
- ready-made guidance packages
- a pension festival (food truck) with various administrators/advisers
- letting participants take a virtual step into the (pension) future
- annual online pension MOT - incl. loyalty programme
- pension podcasts
- pension/advisory consultation as a Christmas present
- pension information kiosk for the office
- leaflets/one-pagers/brochures on various topics/choices
- "the great pension game" as a company outing
- use behavioural philosophy and design principles
- organise "retirement week"
- decision trees for various choices
We would like to build on this input together, through roundtable discussions with employers and advisers. If you are interested in this, please contact Marije Romeijn.
This article is published on 04 August 2023