Continuing from Tuesday’s insight looking at postponement, our analysis shows that general notice A postponement notices are fairly well supported by workplace pension provider systems. Only Aviva Designer, Aviva My Money and Aviva My Money Master Trust do not support them. For all other providers the process is automatic and requires no human intervention.
General Notice B is the best supported form of postponement notice with only Aviva Designer’s system unable to generate them. For all other providers it is a fully automated process.
Tailored notices for a jobholder are also well supported with only the systems of Fidelity, Fidelity Master Trust, Legal & General and Legal & General Master Trust unable to generate them. For all other providers there is no human intervention required to create a tailored postponement notice for a job holder as it is fully automated.
Tailored notices for an entitled worker are slightly less well supported with only two thirds of workplace pension provider’s systems able to generate them. For those who can, they are generated in a fully automated process. The providers whose systems cannot generate them are Fidelity, Fidelity Master Trust, Legal & General, Legal & General Master Trust, Standard Life and Standard Life DC Master Trust.
Our data shows that all workplace pension provider systems, other than Legal & General and Legal & General Master Trust, can generate category notifications.
Postponement periods can be anywhere up to three months. Employers can postpone as many employees as they like, and the postponement period does not have to be the same length for all.
Our data shows that all workplace pension provider systems are able to identify and support different postponement periods for different workers.
Multiple postponements are also not a problem. Our data shows that all workplace pension provider systems can handle multiple postponements with different postponement periods. All systems can also store individual postponement periods against individuals or groups of individuals.
However, if an employee writes to their employer asking to join a workplace pension scheme during the postponement period, they must be enrolled into one once the request has been received assuming they meet autoenrollment criteria. Should this happen, the employer will need to follow the normal assessment an enrolment process for the opting-in a worker. Should the employee qualify, the employer is required to enrol them into a qualifying pension scheme from the enrolment date, which in this case would generally be the first day of the next pay reference period after the receipt of the opt-in request.
Employers can only postpone each member of staff once, including not being able to use a combination of different postponement types. On the last day of the postponement period, they must assess the employee(s) to work out if they meet auto enrolment criteria. For those who do, the employer must them enrol them into a workplace pension scheme as soon as possible. The employer cannot then apply a further period of postponement to the same employee, even if they postponed for less than the three months allowed. The employee can only be postponed again should they not meet the age and earnings criteria for autoenrollment.
Under postponement rules, employees can also choose to opt for postponement themselves. Our data shows that all workplace pension provider systems can identify when workers can postpone auto-enrolment themselves from the employers staging date, the first day of employment and from the date a worker meets the criteria to be an eligible jobholder.
However, not all workplace pension provider systems allow for any number of workers to opt for postponement. Legal & General and Legal & General Master Trust do not allow any workers to opt for postponement. Standard Life and Standard Life DC Master Trust only allow some workers to opt for postponement. However, all other workplace pension providers allow all workers to do so.
Overall, our data shows that workplace pension provider systems are, as a whole, supportive of postponement. However, it is worth noting that Legal & General and Legal & General Master Trust do not allow workers to opt for postponement and also have the least options available when it comes to what kind of postponement notices their system can generate.