'Significant' improvements made in average pension transfer times

The average overall pension transfer time "significantly" improved in the 12-month period since January 2023, falling by 12.2 per cent from 14 to 12.3 days, according to Origo’s Pension Transfer Index data.

The data showed that the average transfer time for simple transfers, those the provider has full control over and can be held accountable for the process, improved over the same period by 16.7 per cent, falling from 12 to 10 days.

The data covered all transfers through the Origo’s Transfer Service for the 12 months to 31 March 2024. During this period, almost 1.2m transfers were completed through the service, which accounts for 95 per cent of all defined contribution (DC) pension transfers in the UK.

Commenting on the findings, Origo CEO, Anthony Rafferty stated: “It is encouraging to see the continued improvement in transfer times over the past 15 months, which we feel reflects a growing movement within the industry to improve the consumer experience.

“This is particularly pleasing ahead of the pensions dashboard staging dates, and demonstrates how technology can help, by automating and digitalising the transfer process and making it trackable.

“We are seeing a general move within the industry to deliver better performance, with providers looking at where and how they can improve their products and in particular their service, to ensure they present the best option for consumers in where to save.

“There is a realisation that service is being measured at both the front end, when onboarding business, and also within the back-office and when business is moving away to another provider.

“Both are affecting the brand and reputation of providers, and we believe will increasingly affect where business is placed in the future.

“We are seeing this not just in transfers through the well-established Origo Transfer Service, but also in the growing number of providers signing to Unipass Letter of Authority, now at 16 and growing, as well as take up of the Origo Integration Hub, with over 100 connections made between companies across a range of services. All of which we see as very positive for the industry.”

The index is published quarterly and records the transfer data from 30 providers, which account for 92 per cent of the pension transfers carried out through the service.

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