In our latest insight we look at the auto-enrolment tools provided by workplace pension providers for employers and advisers and what aspects of auto-enrolment duties these tools can help with.

Auto-enrolment has revolutionised the way many smaller and medium sized companies approach pensions. With a statutory duty on employers to assess their workers and enrol those who met the criteria into a qualifying workplace pension scheme, many employers have approached workplace pensions either for the first time or for a far wider proportion of their workforce over the past few years.

Our data shows that all workplace pension providers have developed tools to assist advisers and employers with their auto-enrolment duties. All workplace pension providers provider auto-enrolment tools which are able to assist with member assessment, member categorisation, communications, re-enrolment and the opt-out process.

A tool to assist with postponement is the most commonly available, with 90% of workplace pension providers offering one.

Three quarters of workplace pension providers offer a tool to assist with the opt-in process, 70% offer a tool to assist with education, 70% of providers offer a tool to assist with compliance, 75% of providers offer a tool to assist with quotes and illustrations.

A slightly less generous 65% of providers offer a tool to assist with project/client management.

However, one area where few tools are offered is charging. Only four workplace pension providers (Aegon Workplace ARC, Aviva Designer, Scottish Widows, and True Potential) offer an auto-enrolment tool to assist with charging and/or how to charge.

Clients of Aviva Designer have access to an auto-enrolment tool called AME, which is the widest ranging AE tool offered by workplace pension providers. The tool is kept behind a security wall and offers assistance with member assessment, member categorisation, the opt-out process, the opt-in process, postponement, re-enrolment, communications, project/client management, charging, compliance and quotes/illustrations.

Aviva My Money, Mercer Master Trust Aviva and Aviva My Money Master Trust offer an auto-enrolment call named FL AE services behind a security wall. The tool can assist with member assessment, member categorisation, the opt-out process, the opt-in process, postponement, re-enrolment, communications, and quotes/illustrations. Clients also have access to a project/client management tool with sample project plans and checklists and have access to resources to assist with compliance. However, there are no tools available to assist with charging.

Aviva Designer, Aviva My Money and Aviva My Money Master Trust clients also have access to an auto-enrolment education tools on their website, with resources available to support advisers and employers.

Scottish Widows is another provider which offers tools to help with all aspects of auto-enrolment. Employers and advisers are offered the AssistMe auto-enrolment tool by Scottish Widows. This tool can assist with member assessment, member categorisation, postponement, re-enrolment, communications, charging, project/client management and quotes/illustrations. An employer hub also offers assistance with compliance.

For the opt-out process, clients of Scottish Widows are directed to a dedicated site or issued with a number to request a paper opt-out form. An opt-in tool also needs to be directed to the employer to reflect in the payroll file that will be sent to Scottish Widows as part of their regular process.

Scottish Widows also have a presentation team to offer education via face-to-face presentations and Web-Ex presentations. This team also offer links to a short corporate pension video.

Aegon Master Trust and Aegon Workplace ARC have developed a web-based tool called SmartEnrol. It is one of the tools offering the widest range of auto-enrolment assistance. SmartEnrol offers assistance with member assessment, member categorisation, the opt-out process, postponement, re-enrolment, communications, compliance, quotes/illustrations and the opt-in process. Aegon Workplace ARC clients are also able to access tools assisting with project/client management and charging. Neither provider offers access to a tool for auto-enrolment education.

True Potential offers a web-based auto-enrolment tool, Auto Enrolment on Auto Pilot. This tool can assist with member assessment, member categorisation, the opt-out process, the opt-in process, re-enrolment, communications, and compliance. It is also one of only a few tools to offer assistance with both education and charging.

However, clients of True Potential do not have access to any tool to help with quotes and illustrations.

Standard Life and Standard Life DC Master Trust also offer auto-enrolment tools that can assist with all but one aspect of auto-enrolment (the area where they have no tool to assist is charging). The Eligibility Calculator tool offers assistance with member assessment, member categorisation, the opt-out process, the opt-in process, postponement, and re-enrolment. The StandardLife Workplace tool offers assistance with communications, education, compliance, quotes/illustrations and project/client management.

Royal London’s web-based auto-enrolment tool, Run, also has a wide range of functionality. The tool can assist with member assessment, member categorisation, the opt-out process, the opt-in process, postponement, re-enrolment, communications, compliance and quotes/illustrations. The provider also offers project/client management tools via implementation support.

Royal London clients also have access to an auto-enrolment education tools for advisers and employers on their website. Charging is the only area where the provider does not offer any tools.

Fidelity and Fidelity Master Trust’s auto-enrolment tool, Workforce Management, offers assistance with member assessment, member categorisation, the opt-out process, the opt-in process, postponement, re-enrolment, and communications. An additional web-based auto-enrolment tool from Fidelity and Fidelity Master Trust, called Planning Tools, offers assistance with quotes and illustrations.

There are no tools available from Fidelity or Fidelity Master Trust for assistance with education, project/client management, charging or compliance.

Hargreaves Lansdown offer an unnamed in-house-built auto-enrolment tool to advisers and employers that offers assistance with member assessment, member categorisation, the opt-out process, the opt-in process, postponement, re-enrolment, and communications.

Hargreaves does not offer any auto-enrolment tools to assist with education project/client management, charging, compliance or quotes/illustrations.

Clients of Legal & General and Legal & General Master Trust have access to an auto-enrolment tool, named SELECT, which offers assistance with member assessment, member categorisation and re-enrolment. An additional tool named CHOICE offers assistance with the opt-out process, communications and can also be used to assist with re-enrolment. Assistance with auto-enrolment education is also offered via the Legal & General website.

Advisers and employers are not offered any tools by Legal & General or Legal & General Master Trust which assist with the opt-in process, postponement, charging, compliance, or quotes/illustrations.

Scottish Widows GSIPP, Scottish Widows Master Trust and Mercer Master Trust Scottish Widows offer an auto-enrolment tool named AE Utility. This tool can assist with member assessment, member categorisation, postponement, re-enrolment, quotes/illustrations and communications.

Clients of Scottish Widows GSIPP, Scottish Widows Master Trust and Mercer Master Trust Scottish Widows can also gain help with the opt-out process via an online or telephone-based service. They also have access to a team which can assist with project/client management. There are also education materials available via a client branded microsite. An Employer Hub tool also offers assistance with compliance.

There are no tools available from these providers to assist with the opt-in process or charging.

Overall, our data shows workplace pension providers offer a wide range of auto-enrolment tools. Some providers choose to host their tools under one broad-ranging solution, whereas others chose to offer separate tools or a single tool with less functionality.

Providers who offer the broadest functionality in terms of auto-enrolment tools are Aviva Designer, Aviva My Money, Scottish Widows and Aviva My Money Master Trust. These providers offer some form of tool to cover all aspects of auto-enrolment.