The Pensions Dashboard is moving one step closer to reality – soon consumers will be to access their private pension arrangements in one place along with their State Pension.

The government has remained committed despite Brexit delays.

Amber Rudd, secretary of state for work and pensions says: “Our priority is to ensure that information is presented securely, in a clear and simple format to support consumers with their retirement planning.”

National IFA firm LEBC has welcomed the government’s dashboard plans, which will help consumers be better prepared for retirement and also allow advisers to cut the cost of advice.

Kay Ingram, director of public policy at LEBC says: “We are pleased that pension schemes will be required to participate, which was one of our key recommendations. We also think it entirely sensible to phase this in to allow accurate data to be included in an orderly manner.”

What will the Pensions Dashboard do?

The government says that the pensions dashboard will: give people accurate, easy-to-understand, secure information about their pension; show people clearly how much they have in their various pension pots and what they can expect to have to live on in retirement; allow people to control when and how they check their data and who has access to it and help people to find ‘lost’ pension pots.

The benefits of the Pensions Dashboard for the consumer has been widely documented, but how will it affect the adviser?

Having a clients’ pension data all in one place, should in theory make giving advice easier, but it could also be a little overwhelming.

There also might be a need for the adviser and even the client to brush up on their IT skills.

Ian Macintyre, strategic insight manager at Royal London says on their website: “There will be more people who want advice [as a consequence of the Pensions Dashboard], but engage with financial services companies digitally. With dashboard more of them will start their pension engagement digitally too. Advisers that can embed dashboard into the services they offer clients, and use it to provide them with a streamlined service will be able to serve more clients in a profitable way.”

A long way to go

Tom McPhail, head of policy at Hargreaves Lansdown says: “When we get draft legislation, in the form of a Pensions Bill later this year the industry will properly swing behind this project.

“Until then it is likely to continue to be a coalition of the willing trying to drive it forwards, with those firms less interested in making it easy for customers to access their data able to carry on hiding behind strategic incompetence.”

Further reading on this topic:

How has investor behaviour changed since pension freedom?