DISCUSSION PAPER PI-0511
Employee Attitudes to Pensions: Evidence From Focus Groups
Alistair Byrne and Bill Rhodes
in this article we present evidence from a series of focus groups where
pensions issues were discussed with the employees of a listed distribution
company. The focus group format allows us to explore the employees’ views
in detail and to present their thoughts in their own words. Perhaps unsurprisingly,
we find the employees have quite limited knowledge about pensions in general
and about their own scheme. They have a strong desire for more information and
advice about pensions, ideally on a face-to-face basis. There were mixed views
about the role of pensions in recruitment, especially for employees younger than
40, and concerns that managers were unable to promote the benefits on offer.
As regards the changes introduced in the Pensions Act 2004, the employees view
the Pension Protection Fund as a valuable measure, but see little point in increasing
the proportion of member nominated trustees.