One in six UK employees have never checked their workplace pensions

The UK’s leading at-retirement adviser commissioned an independent survey of 2,000 UK adults. It found that a quarter (27%) of people with a workplace pension have either not checked it in the past year (11%) or have never checked it (16%).

Less than one in five (19%) UK adults with a workplace pension have checked it in the last month, and only a combined 54% have checked it in the past six months.

When it comes to contributions, 38% contribute between 8% and 10% of their monthly salary into their workplace pension (when combining their and their employer’s contributions). Just 8% of employees contribute more than 15%.

Notably, around one in eight (12%) of people don’t know whether they have a workplace pension or how much they contribute to it.

Despite the lack of engagement and many only making the minimum contributions, most (59%) UK adults with a workplace pension say they will “rely” on it to fund their desired lifestyle in retirement. 

My Pension Expert’s research also uncovered that 52% of UK employees have not done any further pension planning beyond making sure they are enrolled into their workplace pension scheme. 

Lily Megson, Policy Director at My Pension Expert, said: “This research shines a bright and somewhat unflattering light on auto-enrolment workplace pensions. Whilst it’s rightly hailed as a ‘game-changer’ for ensuring employees save into a pension, much more needs to be done to help people to better engage with their workplace pension, and retirement planning more generally.

“Frankly, it’s troubling that people are not checking on their workplace pension more. But the onus must be on the government and employers to realise that auto-enrolment is just the first step – we need to see much, much more done to ensure financial education and pension monitoring tools are made available for the UK workforce.

“Workplace pensions are not just a box to tick – otherwise people could enter later life with a nasty surprise when assessing how financially prepared they are for retirement. Instead, the focus must be on private and public sector collaboration to ensure people are financially empowered and able to secure the fulfilling retirement they deserve.

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