With workers changing jobs on average every five years, there is the potential for one person to have a sizeable number of pension pots in their lifetime.
It's all gone quiet on the pension dashboard front, and there's no talk yet of a portable 'pension for life' to take to your new job, so disparate pension pots are staying for the foreseeable future.
For most, having all of your pension investments in one place is convenient, especially for those nearing retirement who need an accurate figure on the amount sitting in their pot.
Convenience aside, a carefully consolidated pension might help clients avoid high fees encountered by some plans and make the most of lower fees, saving thousands over just a few years.
For advisers, the manual pension consolidation process just isn't fun - it requires a lot of admin, collecting data, scrutinising the benefits of each pension, as well as producing a personalised recommendation for the client at the end. Consolidation advice involves a minefield of weighing up options and considering every perk in relation to the client's objectives and circumstances.
It is however so important for clients to seek full advice, by transferring a pension without advice, the individual might risk waving goodbye to a guaranteed annuity rate (GAR) and the option of buying an annuity in future at a significantly better rate than the open market. Other pension benefits worth keeping are those with 'section 32 buyout' schemes, loyalty bonuses and guaranteed growth rates.
Any adviser looking to shift their model to consolidation advice for all pot sizes will find that technology can help to play a key role in this under-served market.
Wealth Wizards has designed an automated solution that looks at every aspect of a client's pension arrangements, which can be compared systematically and on screen, these include charges, guarantees and where money is invested. The adviser still has the option to manually over-ride a recommendation but by using tech to automate this process they are eliminating the risk of human judgement error. There is also integration with Morningstar to automatically pull through platform charges and fees, relieving the burden for advisers even more.
When you weigh up the advantages of advice technology, the client is the one benefitting the most. Advisers are using tech to do most of the 'heavy lifting', meaning more time can be spent with the client. Start to finish, it can also speed up the advice process yet maintain a robust and high-standard advice recommendation most suited to the client.