Programme List - Pensions and Benefits UK 2017
Menu

Programme

08:45
Registration opens
09:30 – 09:40
Chairman’s introduction and welcome

Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief of Professional Pensions & Workplace Savings and Benefits

09:40 – 10:05
Opening keynote address

Baroness Ros Altmann, Pensions Expert, Former Pensions Minister
Chair: Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief of Professional Pensions & Workplace Savings and Benefits

10:10 – 10:35
Always be prepared

In order to achieve sustainability, pension schemes need to plan for the future, however that is easier said than done given the level of volatility and uncertainty that has dominated the world economy. Hear our expert speaker discuss the economic backdrop for scheme investment and ensure you are prepared for the future.

Professor Andrew Clare, Associate Dean, Chair in Asset Management, Cass Business School
Chair: Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief of Professional Pensions & Workplace Savings and Benefits

10:35 - 10:45
10 minutes for travel between rooms
10:45 – 11:30
KEYNOTE
Panel: Pensions Prophets

With Donald Trump as President and the triggering of Article 50 there is much change on the horizon thus our pensions prophets return for another year with further prophecies on what the next year will bring for the pensions industry.

 

Robin Ellison, Consultant, Pinsent Masons & Professor of Pensions Law and Economics, Cass Business School

Roger Mattingly, Director, PAN Trustees Limited

Peter Askins, Director, Independent Trustee Services Limited

Chair: Malcolm McLean OBE, Senior Consultant, Barnett Waddingham

KEYNOTE
Panel: Employee benefits & reward in the 21st century

Bill Gates once said "We always overestimate the change that will occur in the next two years and underestimate the change that will occur in the next ten. Don't let yourself be lulled into inaction". How we work, the industries we work in and where we work are set to see further change in the next 10 years and this means that benefits and reward professionals need to re-think pay and benefits strategies to ensure they align to evolving business strategies. Our panellists, from varying industries and sizes, will discuss how employers can shape benefits and rewards for the long term.

Danielle Starbuck, Reward Specialist, Samsung UK & Ireland

Pernille Hagild, Country HR Manager, IKEA UK/IE

Chair: Audrey Wilson, Head of Employee Reward and People Data, Capgemini UK

11:30 – 12:00
KEYNOTE
Insights from The Pensions Regulator

This session will hear updates directly from The Pensions Regulator.

Mark Boyle, Non-Executive Chair, The Pensions Regulator
Chair: Stephanie Baxter, Deputy Editor, Professional Pensions

KEYNOTE
Mental Health in the spotlight

No matter your industry or size, employees are critical assets. Thus company success depends on the performance of employees and this is heavily reliant on employee wellbeing, the more supportive and positive the workplace, the happier employees will be and the better they will perform. A critical aspect to employee wellbeing is mental health; this session will examine how employers can tackle the stigma associated with mental health in the workplace, raise awareness and provide support for those suffering a mental health issue.

Marcus Hunt, Health & Wellbeing Manager UK, Ireland and Europe, Unilever
Chair: Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief of Professional Pensions & Workplace Savings and Benefits

12:00 – 12:30
Refreshments and networking break

 

Stream 1 – DB Schemes 

Day 1 – Tuesday 27th June 2017

12:30 – 13:00
PANEL: Priority number 1: DB Reform

 

The future of the DB pension system hangs in the balance as liabilities soar, market conditions worsen and longevity trends rise. DB is at the top of the agenda for the government, who has published its green paper on the future of DB. The WPC's recent report on the governance of DB set out a number of recommendations for the government so there is much to discuss on the future of DB pensions. This session will analyse the outcomes and recommendations of these key reports and their impact on future policy.

David Weeks, Co-Chair, AMNT
Rosalind Connor, Partner, ARC Pensions Law
Hugh Nolan, President, Society of Pension Professionals
Tim Sharp, Pensions Policy Officer, Trade Union Congress
Chair: Tom Partridge, Director, Deloitte
 

13:05 – 13:35
Partner Insight session
Tailor-made risk reduction

Pension schemes' funding levels have faced greater pressure in recent years with increasing longevity and rock bottom interest rates which in turn have increased the incentive to de-risk. In response there have been a number of innovations with more risk reduction strategies now available to schemes of all shapes and sizes. This session will explore how pension schemes are planning their de-risking journey with a focus on member options and longevity swaps.

Michael Walker, Principle Consultant, Aon Hewitt
Chair: Naomi L'Estrange, Trustee Director, 2020 Trustees

13:35 – 14:35
Lunch and networking break

 

14:35 – 15:05
Partner Insight session
Mercer CIO interview - Niall O'Sullivan

Keeping your investments up to date has never been more important. Hear from Mercer European CIO, Niall O'Sullivan about his thoughts on how pension scheme investment strategies might evolve from here. An open conversation with Niall (responsible for £55bn aum) chaired by Jonathan Stapleton.

Niall O'Sullivan, European CIO, Mercer's Delegated Services
Chair: Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief, Professional Pensions.

15:10 – 15:40
PANEL: Scheme consolidation: The new black

There are 6,000 DB schemes operating in the UK and many are considering consolidating in the hopes of closing their funding gaps and securing stability in the future and ultimately deliver better value for scheme members and their sponsors. While scheme consolidation is hailed as the future saviour to many DB schemes, fixing their fragmented nature and the inflexibility of the system, there are still many questions to be answered around the practicalities of scheme consolidation, such as what will it mean for others if one scheme defaults? Hear our panel of expert speakers discuss the opportunities and challenges presented by consolidation.

Duncan Buchanan, Partner, Hogan Lovells & Member, PLSA DB Taskforce
Richard Butcher, Managing Director, PTL
John Finch, Director, Thomson Finch Consulting
Michael Ramsey, Chief Executive, TPT
Chair: Philip Goodchild, Partner, Stephenson Harwood

15:40 – 16:05
Refreshments and networking break

 

16:05 – 16:35
Partner Insight session
Diversifying into alternative investments

Traditional investments are at their lowest yields in over 15 years, and the outlook does not appear very bright for future returns. This session asks if the traditional investment approach of a 60-40 split (bonds-equities) is still appropriate in this difficult climate. Should investors throw out the handbook and take an alternative approach? We shall explore the advantages of incorporating a wide range of alternative investments including property, infrastructure, hedge funds, private equity, insurance linked securities and private debt.

Thomas Weber, Managing Partner, LGT Capital Partners
Chair: Nigel Jones, Director, 2020Trustees

Stream 2 – DC Schemes 

Day 1 – Tuesday 27th June 2017

12:30 – 13:00
Partner Insight session
In the right place at the right time

Key to good retirement outcomes is getting all members to the right place at the right time and giving them the best opportunity to achieve their individual retirement objectives. However, many are embarking on their retirement journey with no knowledge if it's feasible, sustainable or what the risks are. Furthermore, the cash plus annuity model is broken and a growing number of people find themselves holding entirely the wrong investments to execute their retirement income strategy. This session will explore the issues at play and what schemes can do to help more of their members achieve their retirement goals. We will also share our experience of delivering affordable advice solutions through workplace pensions and why a personalised approach is so vitally important for many members and needn't break the bank.

Andrew Pennie, Marketing Director, Intelligent Pensions
Chair: David Rich, Director of Retirement Income Alliance, Accurate Data Services

13:05 – 13:35
Breaking down behavioural barriers to retirement

A significant barrier which is preventing savers reaching their desired retirement income is the prevalence of powerful behavioural biases which see members focus on today's financial obligations or consumption rather than thinking ahead for 10, 20, 30, 40+ years' time. This session will provide a deeper understanding on how these biases work and the tactics schemes can use to ensure members are making the best decisions for their future.

Greg B Davies, Specialist in Behavioural Finance and Founding Partner, CENTAPSE
Chair: Natasha Halsall, Pensions Manager, University of Lincoln

13:35 – 14:35
Lunch and networking break

 

14:35 – 15:05
Partner Insight session
Master trusts: The future of DC pensions? 

Master trusts are dominating the DC landscape and it is estimated that by 2030 there could be 7.2m people saving £350bn into master trusts. Are master trusts the future or just the latest fad? Can master trusts actually enhance member outcomes and set the benchmark for robust governance? This session addresses these questions, explores the new master trust trend; challenges what great governance for DC pension schemes should look like, defining the key metrics for DC trustees to care about to improve member outcomes.

Russell Picot, Trustee Board Member, LifeSight (UK)
David Bird, Head of Proposition Devlopment, LifeSight
Chair: Kevin LeGrand, President, PMI

15:10 – 15:40
Partner Insight session
Freedom & Choice: The story so far...

It has been two years since ‘the biggest shake up in pensions for a century' meant that savers no longer have to buy an annuity and have much more freedom and choice. The Freedoms have proved very popular with savers and the way people access their benefits has completely turned on its head. Also, this year's budget showed that the Treasury has taken a lot more in tax from people accessing their benefits than previously predicted. In this session we'll look at lessons learned over the first two years - the changing trends in how people are accessing their benefits and the support available to help savers avoid rewarding the tax man more than they need to.

Robert Cochran, Corporate Pensions Relationship Specialist, Scottish Widows
Chair: Nigel Jones, Director, 2020Trustees

15:40 – 16:05
Refreshments and networking break

 

16:05 – 16:35
PANEL: The death of MNTs?

The regulator's recent report found that many Trustees are not meeting the standards expected of them, so it has laid out plans to provide further support and education. However some are concerned over the risk of the ‘professionalisation of trusteeship' - through the creation of minimum knowledge and understanding levels. Some fear that by placing new barriers to entry to trusteeship, it will become even more difficult to find individuals to take on this already challenging role. Cost implications (training or appointment of Professional Trustees) may be too much for smaller schemes and others fear the end for the non-professional Trustee. This session will examine the future of pension trusteeship and ask is the industry evolving past the non-professional Trustee?

Peter Sparkes, Trustee, Thomas Cook Pension Scheme
Eleanor Daplyn, Partner, Sackers
Vassos Vassou, Senior Trustee Representative, Dalriada Trustees
Peter Neville, MNT, BTG Pension Fund

Chair: Francois Baker, Head of Pensions, Eversheds Sutherland

Stream 3 – Benefits & Reward 

Day 1 – Tuesday 27th June 2017

12:30 – 13:00
Attract, train and retain millennials

The labour market is becoming increasingly fluid with job hopping becoming the norm for millennials. Thus attracting and retaining younger workers is becoming a real challenge as millennials become a predominant force in the workplace. It's often cited that millennials have different values and motivations than those from previous generations, with good work life balance and a sense of purpose topping the list; therefore it is vital that firms' benefits reflect these values. This session will explore how firms can effectively shape and position their benefits package in the recruitment process to secure the right workers. Our speaker will also discuss how employers can strategically promote these offerings to current employees, in order to retain workers in the long term.

Adam Henderson, Founder, Millennial Mindset
Chair: Kevin Ross, Benefits Expert, Centralus PLC

13:05 – 13:35
Widening the net

There are now up to five generations working side by side which means there are significant differences in needs, motivations and personal situations. Such a diverse workforce could pose a big challenge to employers when not only structuring benefits but also engagement and uptake of these benefits. This session will detail a case study of the innovative way Sage redesigned and communicated their benefits package to their workforce, especially targeted to engage younger generations, with fantastic results.

Kelly Mitchell, Senior Reward Specialist UKI, Sage
Chair: Kevin Ross, Benefits Expert, Centralus PLC

13:35 – 14:35
Lunch and networking break

THIRD FLOOR

14:35 – 15:05
Benefits & Reward takes Dragons' Den

The workplace and its workforce are changing due to a number of drivers such as: Globalisation, changing demographics, evolving employee needs, changes in legislation and disruptive technology. Hear the views of two key providers about the latest innovations for the benefits market. Are you in or out?

Three steps to discover the benefits your employees really want
At Lemonade, we know to keep it simple, get creative and make pensions and benefits more engaging. We will show you how you can find out what your employees really want, and guide you through a case study to show how the message can be segmented and delivered. We'll cover everything from helping your millennials get on the housing ladder to pension freedoms at retirement.
David Pugh, Managing Director, Lemonade

The role of financial education: supporting your employees financial wellbeing
Changing trends within the market has seen employers become increasingly aware of their employee's financial wellbeing. The need for employees to focus on their finances throughout their career and into retirement highlights the importance of financial education, supported by guidance and advice in the workplace. This session will look at ways employers can support their employee's financial wellbeing and discuss various trends such as robo-advice, as well as sharing with you a case study involving the financial education programme implemented by BT and some of the pension pitfalls your employees should look out for.
Jonathan Watts-Lay, Director, Wealth at Work

Chair: David Rich, Director of Retirement Income Alliance, Accurate Data Services

15:10 – 15:40
Partner Insight session
Getting to grips with the digital era

The modern workplace, with the end of 9-5 and the almost mythical idea of a ‘job for life', has changed the relationship between the employer and the employee. Expectations have been raised and the workforce is more mobile than ever before. So it is a challenge to engage people beyond the traditional methods. The explosion in technology platforms has changed the way employers deliver information whether that be through online or digital comms. This session will examine which channels are most effective depending on subject matter and circumstance to help employers sift through the endless options available.

Phil Blows, Account Director, Wealth Wizards
Chair: John McArthur, HR Project Manager, Manpower UK Ltd

15:40 – 16:05
Refreshments and networking break

 

16:05 – 16:35
Is the gig economy here to stay?

The gig economy has spread across the globe and is now prominent in the UK. Companies such as Uber, Deliveroo, and Upwork make up this growing sector and it is argued these firms offer workers greater flexibility and autonomy. However, the growing gig economy is under close inspection and some feel it is just a cover for exploitative behaviour. This session will explore this growing sector and its impact on the UK labour market and employers.

Ian Brinkley, Interim Chief Economist, CIPD
Chair: Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief of Professional Pensions & Workplace Savings and Benefits

Stream 4 – Employee Wellbeing 

Day 1 – Tuesday 27th June 2017

12:30 – 13:00
CASE STUDY: Britain's Healthiest Workplace

Creating a robust and innovative wellbeing strategy is never easy, especially on a budget. Hear directly from the winner of both Britain's Healthiest Workplace and Healthiest Employees: Forster Communications. Peter Gilheany, PR Director, Forster Communications will discuss how this small dynamic employer developed its multi-award winning health and wellbeing strategy without breaking the bank.

Peter Gilheany, PR Director, Forster Communications
Chair: Louise Aston, Wellbeing Director, Business in the Community

13:05 – 13:35
Partner Insight session
Financial Wellbeing: From inspirational to practical

Financial decisions are often complex, overwhelming and stressful, leading many of us to put them off rather than dealing with them. This can, however, compound stress and lead to employees taking time off either through illness or to deal with financial issues.
Employees are looking to their employer for support through holistic financial education programmes covering pensions, employee benefits and personal finances. But what does that actually mean and how can we make complex decisions simpler and, dare we say it, a more enjoyable experience?
This session will examine what employers can do to remove barriers and take practical steps to help their employees take control of their financial wellbeing.

Scott Kendrick, Pensions Director, KPMG
Chair: David Rich, Director of Retirement Income Alliance, Accurate Data Services

13:35 – 14:35
Lunch and networking break

 

14:35 – 15:05
This is Me - Mental health at work

Since 2013, Barclays have been raising awareness of mental health in the workplace through their ‘This is Me' campaign. The campaign saw individuals share their own experiences of managing mental health issues to increase understanding about mental health in the workplace, reduce stigma and discrimination. The campaign has been a great success and led to a change in culture, not only in Barclays, the campaign came to wider notice in the City. Barclays has partnered with the Lord Mayor's Appeal, Mind, Business Healthy and the city Mental Health Alliance on ‘This is Me in City' to bring greater awareness of mental health and tackle the stigma. Hear directly from Mark McLane, Managing Director Diversity and Inclusion, Barclays about the campaign and how you can create a supportive workplace in which employees feel safe and understood.

Mark McLane, Managing Director Diversity and Inclusion, Barclays
Chair: Louise Aston, Wellbeing Director, Business in the Community

15:10 – 15:40
Evolving wellbeing strategy

Forecasts show that by 2020 one third of the workforce will be aged 50+ and it is predicted that more of us are going to be working for longer. These changing demographics bring challenges to organisations that need to ensure they have robust and appropriate employee engagement, health and skills development programmes in place to manage the ageing workforce. Long term absence is more commonly associated with this demographic as more suffer from long term conditions. This session will discuss how employers can implement appropriate support to help employees cope with conditions and adopt early detection and prevention tactics to keep employees fit and happy for longer, and put support in place to retain, retrain and recruit older workers.

Rachel Saunders, Age at Work Director, Business in the Community
Chair: Justin Jones, Professional Head of Physiology, Nuffield Health

15:40 – 16:05
Refreshments and networking break

 

16:05 – 16:35
Where group risk meets wearables and wellbeing

In 2015, 11.5m people were covered by some form of group risk and the market has evolved over the past year with providers seeking to demonstrate value and launch broader health and wellbeing initiatives which focus on prevention and rehabilitation. This session will examine some of the innovations in the market including the greater use of technology (wearables, apps, virtual GPs) which will ultimately impact absence rates and productivity levels. Find out how Dixons Carphone has been using wearables to encourage workplace wellbeing since 2014 with unexpected benefits and remarkable results.

Kesah Trowell, Head of Corporate Responsibility, Dixons Carphone
Chair: Justin Jones, Professional Head of Physiology, Nuffield Health

16:40 - 17:10
CLOSING KEYNOTE: Boosting the grade: Lessons from the best in class

The UK has been knocked out of the Mercer global pension index's top 10  following the system downgrade to C+ in 2016. However, Denmark has topped the global index for the past four years; its robust retirement income system delivers good benefits, is sustainable and has a high level of integrity. This session will examine why and how Denmark tops the list, key features of the system and what the UK can do to improve its pension system.

Svend Hougaard Jensen, Professor of Economics, Copenhagen Business School
Chair: Stephanie Baxter, Deputy Editor, Professional Pensions

17:10 – 17:15
Chairman’s closing remarks – close of conference content day 1

Stephanie Baxter, Deputy Editor, Professional Pensions

17:15 – 18:45
Networking Drinks Reception

 

18:45
Pension Scheme of the Year Awards - (Invitation only)

08:30

Registration opens

Delegates register 

09:15 - 09:20

Chairman's introduction and welcome

Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief of Professional Pensions & Workplace Savings and Benefits 

09:20 - 09:50

OPENING KEYNOTE
The 100 Year Life

Andrew Scott, Author, The 100 Year Life and Professor of Economics, The London Business School
Chair: Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief of Professional Pensions & Workplace Savings and Benefits

09:50 - 10:00

10 minutes for travel between rooms

10:00 - 10:45

KEYNOTE
Investment leaders debate

Investors are operating under a cloud of uncertainty following the rise of geopolitical tension and challenging economic conditions pushing pension funds to hunt yield outside of the traditional asset classes. One certainty is that schemes will be operating in this lower for longer environment and their investments need to work harder than ever before. Hear our investment experts discuss their thoughts on asset allocation strategies and issues for funds for the future.

Stephanie Flanders, Managing Director, Chief Market Strategist UK & Europe, J.P. Morgan Asset Management

Tim Gardener, Partner, Aon Hewitt

Chair: Stephanie Baxter, Deputy Editor, Professional Pensions

KEYNOTE
No longer business as usual

There are a number of factors at play which are shaping the changing nature of work. It is safe to say it is no longer business as usual following the emergence of disruptive business models, technological advances, demographic shifts and significant global political changes. These economic, political and social changes have far reaching implications on the world of work which has led many to reassess the view of the traditional work place and all that is associated with it. This session will examine the changing nature of work and the evolving relationship between the employer and the employee.

Patrick Brione, Head of Policy & Research, Involvement & Participation Association
Chair: Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief of Professional Pensions & Workplace Savings and Benefits

10:45 - 11:15

Refreshments and networking break

 

Stream 1 – DB Schemes 

Day 2 – Wednesday 28th June 2017

11:15 – 11:45
Update from the PPF

The events of 2016 have seen renewed focus on DB pensions and the protection regime. In this session, Andy McKinnon, Chief Financial Officer at the pensions lifeboat provides an update on the PPF's current and future priorities, particularly its plans for the levy rules for the next three years, as well as sharing perspectives on the wider DB landscape.

Andy McKinnon, Chief Financial Officer, PPF
Chair: Simon Kew, Assistant Director, Deloitte

11.50 – 12:20
Partner Insight session
Reassessing the annuity landscape

There are a range of factors affecting the insurance market and how schemes go about assessing whether to transact. With the full impact of BREXIT still to come and Solvency II in its infancy, there are a number of new questions that schemes need to ask when considering a buy-in or buyout to reduce scheme risk. This session will re-assess the bulk annuity market and examine the old and new questions schemes should be asking before entering a transaction.

Tristan Walker-Buckton, Senior Actuary, PIC
Chair: Brian Healy, MNT, NCUSSS

12:20– 13:15
Lunch and networking break

 

13:15 – 13:45
Partner Insight session
Using fiduciary management to punch above your weight

Drawing on real-life examples, this session considers how pension schemes of all sizes can benefit from the power of scale to achieve impactful results. Specifically we shall demonstrate how fiduciary management can provide Trustees with more efficient portfolios, greater control and pound for pound better value for money.

Brian McCauley, Director Institutional Group, SEI
Chair: David Bennett-Rees, Chairman, Freemasons Pension Scheme

13:50 – 14:20
PANEL: Transparency in progress

The argument for greater levels of transparency has gained momentum over the past 12 months and with the FCA review of the investment management industry, it is expected that change is on the horizon. This session will hear a number of perspectives; discuss the FCA's review, the changes that may result and the future of the investment industry.

Imran Razvi, Public Policy Adviser, The Investment Association
Colin Meech, National Officer, UNISON
Andy Agathangelou, Founding Chair, Transparency Taskforce
Chair: Philip Meadowcroft, Chairman & Investment Trustee, Brandmasters Ltd

14:25 – 14:55
Partner Insight session
The road to GMP reconciliation and equalisation

Given the government consultation on GMP equalisation, what actions should schemes be taking and how can a holistic policy on GMP lead to cost savings? Does completion of your GMP reconciliation project help or hinder progress in equalisation? Could schemes use this exercise to remove the complexity of GMP once and for all?

Vanessa Burke, Data Specialist, Willis Towers Watson
Sally Minchella, Senior Consultant, Willis Towers Watson
Chair: Geraldine Brassett, Chair of the PASA GMP Working Group

Stream 2 – DC Schemes 

Day 2 – Wednesday 28th June 2017

11:15 – 11:45
Partner Insight session
The evolution of DC Investment

Due to the closure of the majority of DB schemes and the success of auto-enrolment, the DC market continues to grow and there are now more active savers operating in DC than DB. This, combined with the introduction of auto-escalation, will see the aggregate value of DC grow even further and as these schemes mature there are a greater number of diverse investment options available to schemes. This session will discuss the opening of asset classes and new investment approaches to DC and examine whether they are fit for purpose in the DC space.

Joanna Sharples, Investment Principal & Actuary, Aon Hewitt
Chair: Michael Clark, Founder & Owner, CBC Pension Services

11.50 – 12:20
Partner Insight session
Putting savers on track for a brighter future

While auto-enrolment has led to millions more saving for their retirement, many savers can be lulled into a false sense of security believing their pension is fully taken care of. However, due to the low contribution rates, many will not have a sufficient income to support themselves through retirement therefore, it is important to align savers expectations with reality. This session will discuss the various mechanisms that employers can put in place to prompt engagement throughout savers' working lives and ensure they are saving appropriately for the future.

Anish Rav, Head of DC Strategy & Proposition, Capita
Chair: Tim Middleton, Technical Consultant, PMI

12:20– 13:15
Lunch and networking break
13:15 – 13:45
PANEL: Breaking the mould

Recent research has shown that companies with diverse executive boards outperform peers run by all male boards. The move towards more inclusive and diverse boards is filtering down into the pension's arena. It is argued that diverse boards better represent the interests of members with a wider spread across gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age and experience, as different viewpoints fuel innovative thinking and debate and lead to better outcomes which are key for the pensions industry. This session will explore the case for more diverse Trustee boards; examine the key challenges faced by Trustee boards in improving diversity and look at the future of Trustee boards generally.

Jo Maguire, Trustee, DH&S Retirement and Death Benefits Plan & PwC pension Fund, Director, PwC
Funke Fatunla, Director of Finance, Family Action
Claire Altmann, Client Director, Capital Cranfield

Chair: Stephanie Baxter, Deputy Editor, Professional Pensions

13:50 – 14:20
Partner Insight session
The benefits of factor investing

Gaining exposure to equity markets and the growth they deliver is essential for DC investors; however, is there a better way to improve investment outcomes whilst also being mindful of costs? Factor investing allow investors to seek enhanced risk-adjusted returns, reduce portfolio costs and increase performance transparency. In this session we will explore the evolution of equity investing and how capturing factors can benefit the DC investor. Multi Factor Equities - what is it and how to construct?

Ashley Lester, Head of Multi-Asset research, Schroders

Chair: Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief, Professional Pensions

14:25 – 14:55
Practitioner's view: Lifting the lid on IGCs

IGCs will soon be producing their second annual governance reports. Two years after their launch, we shall examine their impact so far? Have they made a difference to member outcomes, are they delivering value for money, and is there a consensus over what value for money means? We shall also examine how IGCs can become more effective in the future.

David Gulland, Independent Member, Royal London IGC
John Nestor, Independent Member, Prudential IGC
Chair: John Howard, Independent Member, Scottish Widows IGC

Stream 3 – Benefits & Reward 

Day 2 – Wednesday 28th June 2017

11:15 – 11:45
Easy win-win-win?

In a world of increasing choice, "one size fits all" DB benefits are not what members want. Providing members choice and flexibility also allows schemes to reduce cost - good news for sponsors, deficit positions and scheme risk. Member choice/liability management exercises are no longer new and unknown; hear how and why sponsors and trustees have used these strategies to as a key part of improving the health of their schemes, covering the impact on a scheme's de-risking strategy as well as the use of technology and engaging communications.

Stewart Patterson, Head of Liability Management, Willis Towers Watson

11.50 – 12:20
Partner Insight session
The Evolving Workplace: The employee wish list, the employer agenda & how to align them

Employers have a wealth of employee data at their fingertips, however much of this is not being utilised. Tapping into such data can help employers to not only shape more valuable benefits and rewards packages but also reduce costs and risk in their spend. This session will explore how employers can create ‘smarter benefits' through understanding what is working, what isn't and where there are holes in coverage.

Andrew Bruce, Pensions Manager, Centralus PLC
Kevin Ross, Benefits Expert, Centralus PLC

Chair: Michael Klimes, Correspondent, Professional Pensions

12:20– 13:15
Lunch and networking break

 

13:15 – 13:45
Employee Engagement: Don’t run out of steam

Employee engagement is paramount for retaining and attracting today's top talent and with a fluid labour market, engagement is more important than ever before to build employee loyalty and improve retention. While employers are often able to put their initial strategy together, they begin to run out of steam after a few years. Our expert speaker will explore how employers can develop a long term strategy which will engage employees today and in the future.

Cathy Brown, Executive Director, Engage for Success

Chair: Jane Earnshaw, Senior Director - Reward, Asda

13:50 – 14:20
CASE STUDY: Technology + Share Schemes = Success!

Jane Earnshaw, Senior Director of Reward at Asda will present an insightful case study on how the retail giant incorporated the use of technology to support its share plan. Taking a technology enabled approach for enrolment in its Sharesave plan, met the needs of their diverse and dispersed workforce and led to more than 30,000 employees enrolling into its 2015 Sharesave scheme via SMS. Jane will discuss the steps they took to get this initiative off the ground, its success and future plans.

Jane Earnshaw, Senior Director - Reward, Asda
Chair: John McArthur, HR Project Manager, Manpower UK Ltd

14:25 – 14:55
Initial reports: Gender pay reporting, important or irrelevant?

From April 2017, 8,000 organisations will be required to produce their first gender pay report. The requirement was controversial with many employer bodies opposing the compulsion. So just what is the evidence that reporting will do anything to close the gender pay gap. What do the initial reports tell us about the likelihood of them being closed anytime faster than the European Commission's 70 year estimate? Why should employers report more rather than the minimum required? Dr Brown will discuss examples from the early reports and his consultancy work, as well as the findings from a detailed research study he carried out for the Equality and Human Rights Commission, he will outline why you should take the opportunity the requirement presents to drive a successful diversity strategy into practice.

Dr Duncan Brown, Head of HR Consultancy and Research work, Institute of Employment Studies
Chair: Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief, Professional Pensions and Workplace Savings & Benefits

Stream 4 – Pensions & Benefits 

Day 2 – Wednesday 28th June 2017

11:15 – 11:45
Partner Insight session
Do Trustees need to be investment experts?

Recent high-profile cases have brought a renewed focus on governance of pension schemes, raising questions on whether trustees are "up to the job". Many pension schemes still have a majority of lay trustees with little or no prior expertise in investment matters. How much do trustees actually need to know about investments, to satisfy their legal obligations? Can they delegate responsibility, or rely on their managers and advisors, and do advisers do enough to protect their trustees? What steps are schemes taking to strengthen their investment governance?


Geoff Egerton, Managing Associate, Linklaters
Chair: Philip Meadowcroft, Chairman & Investment Trustee, Brandmasters Ltd

11.50 – 12:20
Employee Benefits: Time to think outside the box

From April 2017, the government is restricting the tax advantages of some salary sacrifice schemes. This long-anticipated change may represent a pivotal moment of change for the UK Employee Benefits market, and this session will aim to explore this dynamic, together with other key influences that could and should shape the provision of Employee Benefits for the next decade. Subject covered will include employee engagement, productivity, health and wellbeing, the political landscape, and of course Brexit. We shall examine what employers can do to think outside the box and develop innovative ways to deliver attractive and innovative benefits to their workforce.

Steve Herbert, Head of Benefits Strategy, Jelf Employee Benefits
Chair: Paul Avis, Marketing Director, Canada Life Group Insurance

12:20– 13:15
Lunch and networking break

 

13:15 – 13:45
The productivity push

Productivity is key to economic growth, wage increases and living standards. However, over the past decade there has been a slowdown in global productivity growth and the UK is lagging behind France, Germany and the US. This session will examine current approaches to managing productivity among the UK employers. It will also consider management practices associated with greater performance of firms and growth, including use of technology at work, flexible working, performance and reward management.

Zsenia Zheltoukhova, Research Advisor, CIPD
Chair: Paul Avis, Marketing Director, Canada Life Group Insurance

13:50 – 14:20
Making covenant assessments work for the trustees and the sponsor

Over the past decade, the number of FTSE350 companies supported by a weak covenant has doubled and 2016 saw the aggregate value of DB deficits peak at over £1trn. It is vital that Trustees perform covenant assessments to identify the strength of their covenant and the next steps to take if it's identified as weak. Jonathan will consider how natural bias can enter into your covenant assessment, how to set up simple protocols to enable trustees and sponsors to work together. Working with a covenant adviser or setting up your own proportionate framework and the importance of covenant in integrated risk management and how effective assessment leads to mutual benefit and is not just ‘risk score.'

Jonathan Reynolds, Client Director, Capital Cranfield
Chair: Beth Brown, Senior Associate, Mayer Brown

14:25 – 14:55
Partner Insight session
Pension freedoms - why focusing on consumer engagement is no longer enough

Pension freedoms were an industry game changer but two years on, many people are still struggling with the choices they face. In this session, Darren Philp, Director of Policy and Market Engagement at The People's Pension, outlines the findings of a two year research study into consumer behaviour around these freedoms. With indecision and confusion rife and engagement a continual challenge, he explains why institutional options such as simple and effective default options and access to low cost, trusted advice or tailored decision trees are increasingly important.

Darren Philp, Director of Policy, The People's Pension
Chair: James Phillips, Correspondent, Professional Pensions

15:00 – 15:30

Guest Speaker

Andrew Neil, award winning publisher, broadcaster and journalist
Chair: Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief of Professional Pensions & Workplace Savings and Benefits 

15:35

Chairman’s closing remarks and close of conference

Jonathan Stapleton, Editor-in-Chief of Professional Pensions & Workplace Savings and Benefits