Pension Quality Mark scores a century with Vodafone | Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association

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Pension Quality Mark scores a century with Vodafone

03 June 2011

Vodafone has become the 100th employer to get the Pension Quality Mark (PQM) for offering its staff a high quality pension.

The landmark result of 100 employers means almost 200,000 workers are covered by a PQM recognised pension.

Vodafone has received PQM PLUS, the highest standard that can be attained through PQM. It is the latest organisation to obtain the pensions industry’s standard of excellence. Other recent employers include Nationwide, Capital One, Centrica, Roche and Liberty IT.

The standard distinguishes defined contribution (DC) pension schemes with good contribution rates, which are well run by employers and clearly communicated to staff.

Joanne Segars, Chief Executive of the National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) which launched PQM, said:

“This is a landmark achievement. PQM has been given to 100 employers for the pensions they offer to their staff. The awardees include small and medium-size firms, as well as FTSE 100 companies.

“We are encouraged by the result as it shows that employers across the board increasingly understand the importance of giving their employees good quality pensions.

“The UK is undersaving for its retirement, but the continued growth of PQM is a cause for optimism. The more employers and staff recognise the importance of a quality pension, the better our chances of tackling our pension savings crisis.

“So congratulations to Vodafone and other PQM holders, and we encourage other employers to follow suit by applying for this important recognition.”

Geoff McKenzie, Head of Pensions, Vodafone Group, said:

“Vodafone is committed to providing long-term, sustainable pension plans, and the Pension Quality Mark further underlines the quality of our offering for current and prospective employees.

“Our company pension scheme remains a vital component in our benefits package to retain and attract the very best people.”

PQM was launched by the National Association of Pension Funds (NAPF) in September 2009 to recognise high-quality Defined Contribution (DC) pensions. It also aims to raise awareness amongst employers about the importance of providing solid pensions to staff. There are two standards, PQM and PQM PLUS.

To qualify for the mark, pension schemes need to meet the following criteria:

  • Good contribution rates. For PQM, the total contributions need to be of at least 10 per cent, with a minimum employer contribution of 6 per cent. For PQM PLUS, they need to be of at least 15 per cent, with the employer contributing at least 10 per cent.
  • Good quality governance and low charges.
  • Clear and ongoing communication with the scheme members.

Notes to editors:

  1. Joanne Segars is available for interview.
  2. For further details on the Pension Quality Mark & the ‘Friend of the Pension Quality Mark’ initiative: http://www.pensionqualitymark.org.uk/ and http://www.pensionqualitymark.org.uk/friendofpqm.php
  3. Vodafone is one of the world's largest mobile communications companies by revenue with approximately 371 million customers in its controlled and jointly controlled markets as at 31 March 2011. Vodafone currently has equity interests in over 30 countries across five continents and more than 40 partner networks worldwide.  For more information, please visit www.vodafone.com.
  4. The NAPF is the leading voice of workplace pensions in the UK. We speak for 1,200 pension schemes with some 15 million members and assets of around £800 billion. NAPF members also include over 400 businesses providing essential services to the pensions sector. 

Contacts:

Paul Platt, Head of Media and PR, NAPF, 020 7601 1717 or 07917 506 683. [email protected]

Christian Zarro, Press Officer, NAPF, 020 7601 1718 or 07825 171 446, [email protected]