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Boost in employee confidence for the workplace Pension

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The latest bi-annual National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) Workplace Pensions Survey shows that employee confidence in pensions as a way of saving for retirement has improved from +3% to +22% during 2008.

The NAPF believes this improvement is due to employees ‘psychologically ring-fencing’ pensions alongside a reduction in negative publicity surrounding the security of pensions. A fall in confidence in property as an alternative way to fund retirement will also have played a part.

Other key findings include:-

Pensions Remain The Most Popular Way To Save For Retirement – 41% of all employees feel pensions are the best way to save for retirement. 18% believe property is the best option.

Members Have Little Appetite For Change In Current Economic Climate – Even in the current economic climate, most scheme members have no intention of decreasing their pension contributions. Over the next year, 82% of scheme members intend to make no change to the current contributions they pay and 7% intend to increase their contributions.

However, more work needs to be done for those who choose not to join their workplace scheme as their confidence rating is -9% compared to +54% for those who are members.

NAPF Chief Executive, Joanne Segars, said: “The welcome boost in pensions confidence shows the traditional view of ‘at least I’ve got my pension’ has started to make a comeback. Psychologically, employees are ‘ring-fencing’ their pension from the other financial pressures they are facing.

“The decline in adverse publicity around the security of pensions also has had a part to play. The message that the system in the UK is one of the best protected in Europe must be getting through. The fall in house prices will have made some people reconsider their thinking about using property to fund their retirement.

“There still remains a hard-core group of employees where more needs to be done on re-building confidence, but there lies an opportunity. Employers, the pensions sector and Government need to keep promoting the virtues of the workplace pension.”

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