The value of investments can go down as well as up, and your members could get back less than was paid in.

Investing responsibly means recognising member priorities

When it comes to your members’ pension investments, growing their money and managing risk are their – and our – top priorities.

We also know that most members, while aiming for growth, want to avoid investment in harmful activities and to drive positive change where possible. A smaller group of members would also like to select investments based on their own values and ethics.

By investing responsibly we’re prioritising members’ financial goals while also considering some other factors we know are important to them.

Discover our range of responsible investing solutions below to help your members invest for their future.

We know from our ongoing research that the majority of members expect their pension provider to invest responsibly on their behalf. Eight out of ten of those we surveyed think that it makes financial sense to consider ESG risks. And almost 60% want to understand more about responsible investing.

To find out more about how people feel about responsible investing, download our Responsible Investing Viewpoint 2023 survey.

Our robust approach to responsible investment

Responsible investment is a combination of different approaches to managing money that includes environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors.

When it comes to your investments, we’re accountable to you and your members. That’s why it’s integrated into many of our investment options. It’s also why we need to understand how  investment managers integrate ESG when building portfolios.

How we monitor ESG integration

We review how managers are considering ESG risks and opportunities in their processes

We ask investment managers for information to understand if they’re meeting our current expectations on ESG integration

We commit to better standards of ESG integration and governance

We talk with investment managers to encourage them to incorporate and better use ESG analysis in their processes

We have an ESG approach covering our pension and life unit-linked fund range

Discover how ESG is integrated into our off-the-shelf sustainable default investment option

We have an approach to stewardship and engagement

Visit our Stewardship page for more information about this approach

Making it easy to invest responsibly

Where your members’ pension plans are invested is very important. It has a big impact on how much they’ll have in their pot when they retire and how long this will last, and it can help to take account of other factors that are important to them. That’s why we’ve created a clear choice of ways to invest responsibly - from our easy default to a range of self-select funds.

With most workplace pension scheme members opting to stay in their scheme default, it’s important that it has a comprehensive yet clear strategy to meet most member’s needs.

Sustainable Multi Asset Universal Strategic Lifestyle Profile (SLP) 

Our "default" investment option is designed for the majority of members. It aims to help members achieve a good outcome when they come to retire by:

  • growing capital in the initial years of the savings journey
  • preserving it as members approach retirement
  • focusing on ESG factors we believe are financially material

Sustainable Multi Asset Universal SLP uses three responsible investment approaches:

  1. Negative screening
    Screening out financially material ESG risks (e.g controversial weapons, tobacco etc)
  2. Positive tilting
    Investing in companies that have a higher ESG rating
  3. Stewardship
    Influencing positive change through stewardship, utilising proxy voting and company engagement to drive positive behaviour

Find out more about Sustainable Multi Asset

More choice for members

While our Sustainable Multi Asset Universal SLP is designed to meet the needs of the majority of your members, we recognise some will want to invest in a different way. For members who want to take a different approach, we’ve a range of options to help them do this.

Alternative Sustainable Multi Asset options

We have three additional lifestyle profiles, available as self-select options for members who are looking to target a specific outcome:

  • Sustainable Multi Asset Annuity SLP (a guaranteed regular income)
  • Sustainable Multi Asset Drawdown SLP
  • Sustainable Multi Asset Lump Sum SLP

Future Advantage fund range

Our Future Advantage range consists of five risk-rated funds that members can select based on their attitude to risk.

  • We aim to grow your member’s investment over the long-term through a risk-managed approach
  • There are five funds in the range, each designed to match a different risk attitude on a scale of 1 (lowest) and 5 (highest)
  • A responsible investment approach using exclusions, tilting and stewardship is predominantly delivered through the underlying equity content in each fund (this will vary across the range based on where each fund invests)
  • Investment experts will manage the fund with the aim of achieving the best possible returns for the risk level chosen
  • These are mainly passive solutions, however funds can use active or passive strategies and will invest through other funds from across the industry.

More information on the Future Advantage range, including the level of responsible investment content, can be found in the fund factsheets.

Self-select investment options

For members who want to be more involved in their pension investment, we offer a self-select range of funds, with different strategies, selections of asset types and ESG approaches.

Our active fund options include both screened and thematic options from a range of fund managers.

We also offer passive fund options that track the performance of different market and custom indices. These funds exclude investments that don't meet certain criteria such as specific socially responsible or religious principles.

Responsible investment based on strong principles

We base our commitment to responsible investment on strong principles: those of the United Nations-backed Principles for Responsible Investment (the PRI) and the UK Stewardship Code.

As part of Phoenix Group, we’re on a journey to becoming net zero by 2050. Find out how we’ll continue to support a better financial future for our customers, while considering our investment in carbon emitting sectors in our Net Zero Transition Plan. Standard Life is part of Phoenix Group and the data shown is for the combined Phoenix Group.

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