By Maximilian Clarke

Corporate financial advisers remain broadly positive about their readiness for workplace pension savings changes despite there being less than 12 months until auto-enrolment starts.

Independent research commissioned by Aviva shows that 83% of corporate financial advisers are either ‘fairly’ or 'very confident’ that they are ready to support employers through auto-enrolment in the coming months.

However, 78% of advisers are ‘not very’ or ‘at all’ confident that their corporate clients are prepared for the changes ahead. The ‘cost of extra membership’ (66%) and
‘administration’ (56%) are clients’ top concerns.

Advisers’ readiness for auto-enrolment is seen in the context of broader marketplace change, including the retail distribution review (RDR) and the continued economic uncertainty. A total of 74% said they were moving forward with their plans for the remuneration changes that will happen under RDR, however one in four (26%) still recognised that they had more to do. About a third (36%) identified ‘falling consumer confidence’ and ‘volatile markets’ (29%) as key challenges to their business.

Seventy-nine per cent said they would turn to product providers for advice about autoenrolment, with a sizeable number also looking to their network (26%) and the Pensions Regulator (22%) for backing.

“Corporate advisers are facing a period of unprecedented change," said Alistair McQueen, senior workplace savings manager, "and it’s really encouraging to see that many feel they are on top of the situation despite there being a lot of work still to do with clients.

“We see it as absolutely essential that we share our knowledge and expertise with advisers to ensure that they and their clients get the best auto-enrolment solutions and RDR support for their businesses.”

Whilst signalling confidence in their ability to support customers’ auto-enrolment requirements, corporate advisers said their clients needed a high level of support.

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