In our latest survey, we have looked at what Third Party Administrators (TPAs) have experienced with the Covid-19 lockdown.
Work volumes appear to be steady or modestly reduced. This is perhaps surprising given many members will have had more time at home to think about their pension.
Metrics such as service levels and right-first-time rates continue to be measured and most are not seeking to change their targets.
Home working efficiency
Home working has been embraced at short notice. All have achieved it with a high percentage of their workforce with efficiency rates broadly unchanged (although a few report a modest change either way).
Interestingly, all TPAs report that they can continue with remote working indefinitely. Technology is clearly playing a major part in this adjustment.
Paper no more ~ Tech to the fore
The main challenge of lockdown has been physical paper processing. Outbound has generally been shifted to electronic alternatives but inbound is not so easy to control. Some providers use third-party fulfilment and others are considering bringing forward their out-source plans. Does this really help or just move the problem elsewhere? Member self service also helps although this requires support from clients and willingness from members to use their portal access.
Project work may be being reprioritised
It is great to see that the TPA profession has coped well with implementing Business Continuity Plans (“BCPs”). Anecdotally, we know that some BCPs were initiated before the UK lockdown was officially announced. TPAs investment in technology has paid off and some responses indicate a seamless transition which is amazing when one considers the logistics involved.
How things might change
Continued lockdown may generate more interest in pensions from members and possibly unforeseen challenges for TPAs.
This article can be downloaded using the link below. Contact Chris Stanley at GO if you’d like more insight on how TPAs are operating within the Covid19 lockdown environment.