UK - Employers must do more to promote pension awareness among job-seekers and its impact on pay and conditions, unions claim.
The Trades Union Congress says that occupational arrangements should be a key consideration for prospective job-seekers considering offers and that too many of them – particularly young people – fail to understand how much a “good” scheme contributes to pay and conditions.
The TUC also believes that many do not understand how to compare different types of schemes. To that end, the TUC is providing job-seekers with a list of questions to ask companies and a toolkit to evaluate the answers.
These cover contribution levels, provision for surviving dependants and whether survivor benefits will be paid to unmarried partners. Employers are also being urged to provide a straightforward overview of their pension scheme to job applicants, and to answer questions in a standard format.
TUC general secretary Brendan Barber blamed companies for deepening the “pensions crisis” by cutting back their pensions promise to staff and emphasised the need for understandable information.
He said: “Job applicants should ask hard questions about the pension available and, unless they have no choice, should be prepared to say no to an employer who offers a poor or non-existent pension.”
• The TUC will be holding a “Pay up for Pensions” demonstration in London on June 19, when union leaders will call for compulsory employer contributions to occupational schemes.
The government is in talks with the UK and Irish pensions regulators over how to protect members of cross-border schemes in the event of a no-deal Brexit.
The equalisation of guaranteed minimum pensions (GMPs) is at least two years away from being completed, and could take longer than four years for some schemes, a poll has found.
The Pensions Regulator will consider if schemes should be required to have professional trustees and assess the case for greater regulation of administrators and system providers, PP can reveal.
UK inflation fell from 2.3% to 2.1% in December, approaching its lowest rate for two years, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).