Pension reforms have pushed employers to play a greater role in their staff’s financial education, with 42 percent reporting that they are planning more financial engagement exercises in the workplace according to new research from Close Brothers Asset Management.

The study of nearly 700 employers found that there has been an increase in younger staff seeking pension advice since the reforms, encouraging 37 percent to take further action in educating workers about their financial options.

Jeanette Makings, head of financial education services at Close Brothers, said:

“Just three months in, the pension reforms are not just encouraging those approaching retirement to think about their financial plans, but they are also turning the heads of the younger generation. And just as encouraging is that a growing number of employers have identified the change as an opportunity to introduce or revisit their approach to financial education to support all staff in improving financial wellbeing and planning for retirement.

While 10 percent are confident they already had robust enough programmes in place, a further 14 percent are directing staff towards external resources like financial advisers or Pensions Wise.

When it comes to implementing financial education, employers are actively engaging more with their staff, with a particular focus on planning for retirement. Two fifths (42%) of employers are now planning more pension engagement exercises with their employees to encourage them to save for their future. Of these, just 12% are limiting this to employees aged over 55.

Makings added:

“It is important for employers to remember the pivotal role they can play in the education of staff throughout their careers: retirement planning doesn’t just happen at retirement and the earlier people start using their workplace pensions and other benefits to improve their financial wellbeing, the better.  The research is clear that while many have already taken positive steps, there is more that can be done.

“Employee financial wellbeing doesn’t just benefit individuals, it is crucial to business success, boosting engagement, retention and productivity.”