Employers fail to meet staff expectations on retirement planning

Just 30% of employees believe their employer is doing a good job in helping them plan for retirement and a growing proportion expect financial services-style technology to manage workplace benefits.

Out of the 1,000 employees who responded to Mercer’s Employee rewards, benefits and savings survey, 86% said they would like to receive financial planning tools for pensions and savings. However, just 16% of employers provide these tools, with a further 28% planning to offer them in the future.

The majority (86%) of employees also want online tools to help them change their benefits allocation, yet only 27% of employers provide this type of service. In addition, more than half (54%) would like access to alternative savings plans.

Steve Charlton, a principal and senior consultant at Mercer, said: “The strong demand shown for alternative savings plans is consistent with more general feedback in the market – that pension savings are not appropriate for everyone at different stages of life, especially younger employees whose priority is often to pay down debt or get on the housing ladder.

“Technology can improve processing efficiencies and help reduce costs. More importantly, it enables employees to understand the real value of their rewards, enabling them to appreciate benefits as part of their total reward package.”

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