The Scottish Public Pensions Agency (SPPA) and Aquila Heywood have renewed their technology-based partnership in a bid to improve efficiencies for more than 550,000 members.
Aquila Heywood will provide an integrated IT software solution to the SPPA, including its Altair and i-Connect platforms, with workflows and data exchange to be automated.
The SPPA administers pension benefits for 550,000 active, deferred and pension members at 1,250 employers, including schools, the NHS, and police and fire authorities.
The partnership was originally formed in March 2007 and was extended in June to March 2024.
More than 300 administration staff at the SPPA will use Aquila Heywood's tools, benefiting from "smart automated workflows, simplified new business onboarding, and integrated communication tools for faster, more efficient member setup, processing and ongoing management."
The i-Connect platform will be newly implemented following the renewal, providing data exchange between employers and pension funds for member processing.
SPPA chief executive Penelope Cooper said the agency expected greater efficiencies as a result.
"SPPA is committed to putting the customers' needs at the heart of service delivery and this partnership represents our pledge to working on business solutions to enhance the customer experience," she said. "We look forward to working with Aquila Heywood to deliver operational efficiencies and extend the digital services we can provide our customers."
Aquila Heywood chief executive Simon Barker said scheme members would find it easier to control their funds.
"Aquila Heywood is delighted that SPPA has extended its contract with us," he said. "Customer collaboration is at the forefront of what we do and placing our teams into the customer's environment provides a vital extension of skills, knowledge and support so that, ultimately, they can better serve their members and employers at low cost.
"By implementing smart member self-service tools, SPPA scheme members can take greater control of their pension pots and more easily manage their later-life financial planning with greater transparency."
In July, Aquila Heywood also announced it had partnered with Western Union to improve services to overseas pensioners, namely existence checking to reduce fraud where relatives continue to draw benefits of pensioners who have died.
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