6 ways you can support employees with their retirement goals

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Esther Hawley

April 24, 2024

2 mins read

Increased living costs and insufficient pension funds have forced many retirees to go back to work. Employers can play a key role in helping people engage with their pension – and increase their chances of achieving their retirement goals.

As people’s finances are stretched to their limits, more retirees are being forced back into the workforce. That’s according to our latest Retirement Voice 2023 report, which reveals that 1 in 7 (14%) retirees aged over 55 have gone back into work. And a further 4% are considering it.

So what’s driving people to unretire? Almost two thirds (64%) of over 55s who’ve returned to work say income issues have been the driving force behind their decision. A third (32%) say their living costs have increased more than they’d expected, meaning they’ve needed to return to work, and a quarter (24%) have realised their pension is not providing enough income to live on.

The cost of living crisis has piled the pressure on people’s finances over the past few years, and almost everyone has been affected to some extent. So it’s no wonder that people are having to rethink their retirement plans.

As an employer, you can play an important part in helping employees maximise their pension savings and stay on track for the retirement they want. Here are six ways you can support your employees:

1. Promote your employer matching scheme

If you offer a matching contribution scheme – where you pay extra pension contributions to match the amount employees pay – make sure you shout about it. This could encourage employees to pay more into their pension than the bare minimum, helping them get the most out of their workplace pension scheme.

2. Communicate the tax benefits of bonus sacrifice

If you offer a bonus sacrifice scheme, ensure your communications are clear and simple to help employees understand the potential tax benefits. 

Explain that putting some or all of their bonus into their pension plan could help them keep more of their money, because they’ll be paying less in tax and National Insurance. Plus, it’ll give their pension pot a real boost.

Read more about the benefits of bonus and salary sacrifice.

3. Focus on financial education

Helping employees understand their money better can make a positive difference to their overall financial wellbeing. As a result, this can help them feel more confident making decisions about their financial future.

To help boost employees’ knowledge, signpost to financial education content. MoneyHelper is a good place to start, providing guidance on a range of financial matters.

If you’re with Standard Life for your workplace pension scheme, employees can get access to bitesize content, tools, and videos through our Money Mindset platform. Covering topics such as managing everyday money and planning for retirement, Money Mindset allows employees to improve their financial knowledge whenever and wherever it suits them. 

4. Help employees locate lost pensions

It’s likely that many of your employees have had several jobs throughout their career. That means they probably have a few old pension pots dotted around. 

Helping employees find old pensions could give them a better idea of how much they’ve got.

You can signpost them to tools that help them locate lost pensions, such as the Government’s Pension Tracing Service.

Standard Life workplace pension scheme members can also use our Pension Finder tool, available through Money Mindset. This takes their employment history details from LinkedIn and uses these to automatically search the Pension Tracing Service – making it quick and easy to find old pensions.

5. Provide online retirement tools

Understanding what kind of retirement lifestyle they’re on track for can help employees make better informed decisions about their money.

Our Retirement Income Tool, available to all Standard Life workplace pension scheme members, can help them see what their retirement income could look like and if they need to take any action.

6. See which RLS bands employees fall into

We know that some retirees returned to work because their pension savings weren’t enough to cover their living costs. So it’s important to support employees who are most at risk of having insufficient savings.

Our Client Analytics platform incorporates data from PLSA’s Retirement Living Standards, so you can see where employees are projected to fall within each RLS band. For those who are most at risk of falling into the ‘minimum’ or ‘below minimum’ bands, you can create a targeted campaign to help them get back on track. 

For more insights on financial wellbeing, including resources on how you can help support your employees, visit our Financial Wellbeing hub and read our articles.


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