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The vital role proactive communications play in administration transitions

Mastering the art of transparent communication: a seven-step strategy for seamless pension administration transitions

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Author: Katie Stone
22 August 2023

In the dynamic landscape of pension schemes, changes are often stepping stones towards improved service quality. However, these changes can pose challenges, especially when they involve a new administrator. At Trafalgar House, we understand these concerns and are committed to harnessing the power of open, consistent, and transparent communication to support smooth, reassuring administration transitions for the members we serve. 

With cybercrime on the rise within financial services, establishing trust and credibility during administration transitions becomes even more vital. Our comprehensive communication strategy focuses on seven crucial steps: 

Step 1: Establish credibility – It’s important to start the journey with an announcement that clearly explains the reasons behind the shift and how it will benefit the membership. This first step serves as a cornerstone for building a transparent and trusting relationship. 

Step 2: Repeat the message – Recognising that effective communication requires repetition, we believe in consistently reiterating the message through newsletters, emails, and online updates. This ensures each member can absorb the information at their own pace and fully understand the implications of the transition and how it will impact them. 

Step 3: Utilise multi-channel communication – Embracing the power of diverse channels, updates should be distributed via traditional methods such as direct mail and digital platforms including websites and social media, and even through more engaging methods such as personalised videos. 

Step 4: Prove legitimacy – It’s important that members recognise that the message is legitimate. Some communications, especially the earliest ones, should prominently feature the branding of scheme trustees or that of the sponsor, reinforcing the change’s credibility. 

Step 5: Use a variety of public sources – We recommend amplifying the message by issuing the announcement across multiple trusted outlets. Press releases, statements from the Trustees, and updates on public websites and intranets will collectively cement the authenticity of the change. 

Step 6: Set clear expectations – Communication should aim to not just inform but also to guide. It’s important to clarify what members can expect throughout the transition, from timelines and key milestones to changes in their interactions with the pension scheme. 

Step 7: Provide plenty of notice – Lastly, recognising the importance of careful planning, especially for those nearing retirement or contemplating investment changes, make sure you provide advance notice about blackout and bedding-in periods. 

In summary, effective communication is at the heart of a smooth and successful pension administration transition. The change may involve different providers and unfamiliar processes, but if you establish credibility, set clear expectations, and maintain transparency throughout, you can alleviate uncertainties and ensure members’ peace of mind.  

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