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PMI Regional Groups Conference 2021

PMI Regional Groups Conference 2021

15 March 2021 | 19 March 2021
Free

PMI Regional Groups Conference 2021

The PMI's network of regional groups offers support and insight to PMI members across the UK. Join us for our series of specialised regional webinars aimed to provide updates into the developing pensions landscape across the UK.

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    Fees

    Free for members and non-members
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    17

    speakers
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    7 hours

    of CPD
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    Online

    BrightTALK

Event Details

THE BASICS

Topics of discussion:
  • Supporting pension scheme members at retirement during the pandemic and beyond
  • Getting and keeping your members' attention
  • Where are we now and what barriers remain to get GMP Equalisation done?
  • Fight club - Master Trust vs GPP
  • 101 years old, the role of the Government Actuaries Department
  • Valuations, covenant, and funding in the time of Covid – hitting a moving target?
  • Pension freedoms – five years on
Who should attend:
  • Pension scheme managers
  • Trustees
  • Administrators
  • Policy advisers
  • Consultants 
  • Lawyers
  • Corporate IFAs
  • Investment managers 
  • Actuaries
  • Communication professionals
  • Scheme secretaries
  • Financial directors 
  • HR representatives
The venue
Event Venue Brighttalk 2

Agenda

15 March | 10:00 – 11:00
Supporting pension scheme members at retirement during the pandemic and beyond
Jonathan Watts-Lay
Jonathan Watts-Lay
WEALTH at work
Director
David Weeks
David Weeks
AMNT
Co-Chair

One year on since Covid-19 first struck and the complexities facing pension scheme members as they approach retirement has never been more prevalent. With many households surviving on a reduced income, affordability issues have seen members reducing or pausing their pension contributions, with those aged 55 and over even dipping into their pots whilst still working to make up for the shortfall in income. Many have been forced into an early retirement because of redundancy, whilst others have delayed retirement due to their pension posts losing value. 

On top of this, there are other issues such as the rise in pension scams, changes to how defined benefit transfer advice is accessed, and the introduction of investment pathways.

 This webinar will uncover the steps Trustees and employers can take to support pension scheme members in the lead up to and at retirement, during the pandemic, and beyond. This includes exploring:

  • The complex decision members need to make in the lead up to retirement and how they can easily make costly mistakes
  • The role of financial education, guidance, and regulated financial advice in combatting these issues
  • Best practice on how to implement robust processes

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15 March | 14:00 – 15:00
North West Regional Group: Getting and keeping your members' attention
Nathan Robinson
Nathan Robinson
North West Regional Chair
Graeme Riddoch
Graeme Riddoch
Spence and Partners
DB Fintech Development
  • How to engage people with their pension benefits in the digital era
  • A practical session looking at the dos and don'ts of good communication
  • Getting the language right
  • Why timing matters?
  • How to use available technology

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15 March | 15:30 – 16:30
Northern Ireland Regional Group: Where are we now and what barriers remain to get GMP Equalisation done?
Brian Quinn
Brian Quinn
Northern Ireland Regional Chair
Vicky Mullins
Vicky Mullins
XPS Pensions Group
Head of GMP Equalisation
Chris Crighton
Chris Crighton
TLT LLP
Partner

It is now more than two years since the Lloyds judgment and with the recent follow-on judgment on past transfer values, the industry is making a major push to start to implement GMP Equalisation. This session will explore the current legal & administration challenges facing schemes dealing with GMP Equalisation and explain why solving GMP Equalisation does not need to be as complicated as it first seems.

  • GMP reconciliation and rectification
  • Data
  • Back payments and prioritisation of members
  • Equalisation method and cost comparisons
  • Past transfers
  • Communications

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16 March | 17:30 – 18:45
London Regional Group: Fight club - Master Trust vs GPP
Emma Watkins
Emma Watkins
Scottish Widows
Managing Director of Retirement and Longstanding
Paul Budgen
Paul Budgen
Smart Pensions
Director of Business Development
Jamie Jenkins
Jamie Jenkins
Royal London
Director of Policy & External Affairs

Join our debate on trust versus contract in the Defined Contribution space. A lively discussion involving our esteemed speakers supported by questions from the audience.

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17 March | 09:30 – 10:30
Scotland Regional Group: Pension freedoms – five years on
John Wilson
John Wilson
Scotland Regional Chair
Alison Leslie
Alison Leslie
Hymans Robertson
DC Investment Consultant
Kathryn Fleming
Kathryn Fleming
Hymans Robertson
Partner and DC Consultant
Claire Roarty
Claire Roarty
Hymans Robertson
DC Consultant

In this webinar we will assess retirement behaviours five years on from Freedom and Choice, looking at whether members are making good choices, how the industry and providers have responded, and what future developments could look like.

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18 March | 10:00 – 11:00
South West Regional Group: Valuations, covenant and funding in the time of Covid – hitting a moving target?
Adrian Kennett
Adrian Kennett
Dalriada Trustees
Director
Dan Gilmour
Dan Gilmour
PwC
Senior Manager
Ross Connock
Ross Connock
PwC
Director
Matthew Plail
Matthew Plail
XPS
Scheme Actuary and Head of Member Analytics Service

How should trustees approach actuarial valuations when there is so much uncertainty? The pandemic has accelerated fundamental change in many areas of business, generated market volatility (particularly in gilt yields), and impacted mortality trends. Pension liabilities are long-term whereas the valuation is a snapshot in time – what can trustees do to take account of post valuation experience and take a longer-term view?

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18 March | 17:00 – 18:00
Southern Regional Group: 101 years old, the role of the Government Actuaries Department
Fatima Kamran
Fatima Kamran
Government Actuaries Department
Actuary

This webinar is aimed at explaining the role of the Government Actuaries Department, the many changes since its formation in 1919, and the future challenges of an aging population, climate change and the Uk’s recent exit from the EU.

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Speakers

Hear from the experts

Graeme Riddoch
Graeme Riddoch
Spence and Partners
- DB Fintech Development

Graeme is responsible for driving the Mantle software business to realise its full potential. This includes setting the overall direction, identifying new opportunities and product developments.

Graeme joined in November 2019 and has spent the last 10 years in Fintech. Most recently he was a founding director of HUB Pension Solutions a ground breaking DB member options business with a big focus on member engagement.

Emma Watkins
Emma Watkins
Scottish Widows
- Managing Director of Retirement and Longstanding

Emma is the Managing Director for Retirement and Longstanding, where she has responsibility for the retirement journey, individual and bulk annuities and supporting loan investments and longstanding propositions.

Prior to joining Scottish Widows in June 2015, Emma was a partner at a leading pension consultancy, specialising in helping trustees and companies manage defined benefit pension scheme risk using insurance solutions.

Emma has held senior positions at several other insurance companies, with over 22 years’ experience in the pensions industry

Paul Budgen
Paul Budgen
Smart Pensions
- Director of Business Development

Paul Budgen Director of Business Development Paul has spent 26 years working for leading workplace pension providers in the UK. He leads Smart's business development team as we evolve into more than an auto-enrolment provider. Before joining Smart in 2017, Paul led business development for the government-funded NEST scheme and has lead institutional marketing and sales teams to create and distribute pension schemes. He is a member of the Chartered Institute of Insurance.

Jamie Jenkins
Jamie Jenkins
Royal London
- Director of Policy & External Affairs
Vicky Mullins
Vicky Mullins
XPS Pensions Group
- Head of GMP Equalisation

Vicky is an Actuary, advising a wide range of employers and trustees on their pension challenges. Vicky is also head of GMP Equalisation for XPS, leading our approach to solving this complex problem. 

Chris Crighton
Chris Crighton
TLT LLP
- Partner

Chris is a pensions lawyer dual-qualified in both England & Wales and Northern Ireland advising employers and trustees throughout the UK. Recent highlights include advising both private and public sector employers on a number of significant public sector outsourcing contracts. He has abundant experience in advising trustees on a number of employer-led risk reduction exercises. 

Chris is a regular speaker on topical areas of pensions law and also provides bespoke training sessions for clients. He is a full member of the Association of Pension Lawyers.

Brian Quinn
Brian Quinn
Northern Ireland Regional Chair
-

Brian is Chair of the newly formed PMI Northern Ireland Regional Group, as well as a Senior Consultant at XPS Pensions Group.

With over 20 years’ experience of working in the pensions industry, Brian specialises primarily in the delivery of governance and trustee secretarial services to clients.

Fatima Kamran
Fatima Kamran
Government Actuaries Department
- Actuary

Fatima Kamran is an actuary in the Public Service Pension Schemes team at GAD, where she has been working for over 9 years. She joined GAD as a graduate trainee following the completion of her Masters in Actuarial Science and she qualified as an actuary in 2016.

Fatima’s specialism is pensions. During her time at GAD, she has worked on a range of pension schemes including the Judicial, Fire, Armed Forces and Local Government pension schemes. Her experience includes traditional pensions work (such as scheme design, actuarial valuations, accounting disclosures) as well as other work like litigation, government consultations and a review of actuarial valuations.

While seconded to the Department for Work and Pensions, Fatima provided actuarial expertise to their work around the consolidation of defined benefit pension schemes. Recently she’s been working on the implications of the McCloud litigation and the government’s consultation around its 2015 public sector pension reforms. 

Adrian Kennett
Adrian Kennett
Dalriada Trustees
- Director

Adrian is a Director of Dalriada Trustees, head of Dalriada’s Ongoing Trusteeship practice, and an Accredited Professional Trustee.

During his 27 years in the pensions industry, he has been appointed to some of the most challenging Trusteeship cases, led teams of over 60 actuarial, administration, and consulting staff, overseen some of the largest scheme buy-ins and buy-outs, and overseen the wind-up of over 200 schemes.

A Fellow of the Pensions Management Institute, his wider experience includes:

- benefit rectification

- scheme mergers and flexible apportionment arrangements

- negotiation of guarantees and contingent asset structures

- governance reviews on behalf of insurers for the estimation of premiums for full data risk transfers

- debt compromise

- PPF assessment process development

He sits as both Trustee Chair and a Member of the Board of Trustee on appointments ranging from those with liabilities of less than £10 million to those with liabilities of over £2 billion.

In his spare time, he balances between his family and training for triathlons. His two young daughters are probably both going to be better triathletes than he will ever be.

Dan Gilmour
Dan Gilmour
PwC
- Senior Manager

Dan has seven years’ experience supporting trustees and corporate clients with valuations, covenant
monitoring, transactions, PPF levy guarantee certifications, and business plan reviews. His expertise includes:

  • Advising trustees in situations where corporate activities have led to potential Type A events and
    identifying appropriate mitigation;
  • Supporting corporates with articulating their assessment of the strength of the covenant;
  • Working with trustees to review management business plans and identify key areas of concern and
    options to protect the scheme’s position;
  • Developing effective and cost-efficient covenant monitoring frameworks;
  • Advising trustees on the certification of PPF levy guarantees, including identifying a £1m levy
    reduction opportunity.

Dan completed a six-month secondment to TPR in 2019, where he worked with the newly-established Rapid Response team to assess the covenant implications of corporate activities in over 50cases. He also played a key role in the development of the 2019 Annual Funding Statement. He was shortlisted for the Professional Pensions ‘ Rising Star award in 2019.

Ross Conncok
Ross Conncok
PwC
- Director

Ross is a Director in PwC's Business Restricting Services team who brings his wider restructuring skills and experience into the Defined Benefit pension scheme arena.

Ross undertakes the full spectrum of scheme funding covenant and negotiations, assessing the impact of transactions, detriment, and mitigation, and pensions-led restructuring strategies, acting for both trustees and sponsors.

He is experienced in negotiating with sponsors, Regulators, and other stakeholders and seek constructive, balanced outcomes.

His sector experience is broad, build across over 30 years in the restructuring profession and having operated both domestically and internationally. Ross has focused on pension work for over 15 years now.

Professional qualifications 

  • JIEB – Licenced Insolvency Practitioner
  • Fellow Chartered Certified Accountant

Areas of expertise

  • Defined Benefit Pensions - covenant, scheme funding negotiations, transactions, and restructuring
  • Strategic and financial reviews
  • Strategic and accelerated disposals
  • Structuring and execution of corporate restructurings
  • Contingency planning and formal insolvency assignments
  • Stakeholder management
Matthew Plail
Matthew Plail
XPS
- Scheme Actuary and Head of Member Analytics Service

Matthew is a Scheme Actuary and the Head of Member Analytics Service within the XPS Demographics team with experience in giving advice to Trustees on how to use the COVID/Member analytics analyses.   

Nathan Robinson
Nathan Robinson
North West Regional Chair
-
Jonathan Watts-Lay
Jonathan Watts-Lay
WEALTH at work
- Director

Jonathan Watts-Lay is a founding Director of WEALTH at work - working with a number of the UK’s leading companies and pension schemes to help their employees and members understand their financial situation, particularly with regards to pensions and how to optimise income in retirement.

Jonathan is also a recognised commentator on financial matters, particularly with regard to pensions and retirement, and is often quoted in the national and trade press and frequently speaks at roundtable and workshop events.

Alison Leslie
Alison Leslie
Hymans Robertson
- DC Investment Consultant

Alison has worked in the pensions industry for over 20 years in both general consulting and investment. She has specialised in DC consulting for the last five years leading clients of various sizes and complexity. She has a passion for responsible investment in particular.

Kathryn Fleming
Kathryn Fleming
Hymans Robertson
- Partner and DC Consultant

Kathryn is an Actuary and a partner at Hymans Robertson and she leads the At Retirement proposition for DC workplace clients. In the last 12 months, she has led the introduction of at-retirement strategies for nearly 0.5m DC savers with c£3.5bn of assets under management.

Claire Roarty
Claire Roarty
Hymans Robertson
- DC Consultant

Claire has been with Hymans Robertson for 10 years, working across a range of areas including DB and DC pensions, Expert Witness cases, and leadership roles. She now focuses solely on DC Consulting, specialising in Provider research and selection, and High Earners.

John Wilson
John Wilson
Scotland Regional Chair
-
David Weeks
David Weeks
AMNT
- Co-Chair