Irish Plan Sponsors Urged to Provide Savings Advice to Boost DC Participation
25 June 2012 (PLANSPONSOREurope.com) - Irish plan sponsors should think about providing savings advice as well as trying to improve employee engagement with pensions, Allison Girdwood, consultant at Davidson Asset Management has told PLANSPONSOR Europe.
Latest figures from the Irish Pension Board reveal the number of people in a defined contribution (DC) arrangement has fallen by 25,000 in the last year.
Girdwood told PLANSPONSOR Europe that there were a number of options available to employers in improving engagement with DC provision.
“It is dependent on the employer but they could get advisers in to do pensions clinics, hold presentations, put fliers in with pay slips, set up websites so employees can look at the options available to them or get experts in to provide advice.
But she adds tough economic times are taking their toll. “People just don’t have the money now. It is not just people affected by the euro – it’s UK-wide. If they have surplus funds then that’s great but because of the rising cost of living, people are struggling to make ends meet. They could give advice on debt or refinancing debt to make sure they are getting the best value for money and look at things like utilities to make sure they have got the right package to manage their outgoings to free up some money to invest in something like a pension.
“If employers are willing to contribute themselves that could be a catalyst for getting the employees on board but employers don’t have the money to do that because they are fighting for survival as it is.”