Bigger and better: Trustee Workbench 2019
The PMI has historically prided itself on its offering for trustees. Our Trustee Group has grown significantly in the past year to reach 1100 members. To help us meet the demands of such a large group, we have been working to extend and improve our range of services to Trustee Group members.
One area of focus has been on improving our conference programme for trustees. Historically, PMI offered two trustee seminars each year. This year, we decided to bring together these seminars under one larger conference to form a more comprehensive programme within an interactive environment, while remaining a free event for Trustee Group members.
The result of this new thinking saw the launch of the inaugural Trustee Workbench in June. As in previous years, this was a full-day event designed for an audience of lay trustees. However, there were some striking innovations. To ensure variety in both format and content, all sessions introduced new ideas to the trustee audience. The exhibition area provided greater opportunities for networking with other trustees, exhibitors and decision makers.
Following an introductory address from Chris Parrott, Chair of the PMI Trustee Group, Aon Partner Paul McGlone discussed the changing challenges facing trustees. Paul was followed by a panel discussion chaired by Liz Pfeuti (Rhotic Media). Panellists Ian McKnight (Royal Mail), Chetan Ghosh (Centrica) and Kevin Wade (SAUL) discussed investment strategies for uncertain times, and gave careful consideration to innovation and improving member outcomes.
Delegates then enjoyed a three-part presentation on preparing Defined Benefit (DB) schemes for an effective endgame, with Tom Seecharan (KPMG), Jos Vermeulen (Insight) and Pretty Sagoo (Legal & General). With the Pensions Regulator placing a greater emphasis on longer-term planning for DB arrangements, this was a particularly timely session.
The final morning presentation saw The Pensions Ombudsman examine the preparations trustees should make to avoid falling foul of his office. Precious advice indeed!
After lunch, Chris Connolly (Equiniti) discussed the increasing use of technology and ways that it can be harnessed to trustees’ advantage. Chris was followed by a dedicated Defined Contribution (DC) session led by Niall Alexander (River and Mercantile).
Niall discussed the still-uncommon concept of fiduciary management in the context of DC arrangements.
The final session of the day saw David Fairs (the Pensions Regulator) discuss TPR’s expectations of trustees. He reminded the audience of TPR’s forthcoming trusteeship and governance consultation, due in early July.
The new format proved to be very successful with high quality content, extremely positive delegate feedback and our largest trustee audience to date.
We have already started work on preparing next year’s Trustee Workbench and can assure our members that we have no plans to rest on our laurels. We remain committed to offering the highest standards at PMI events. Long may this continue!
To find out more about becoming a Trustee Group member, contact our membership team: firstname.lastname@example.org
Last update: 13 July 2020