Electronic transfers

Launched Supplier Accreditation Program to Combat Delays in Switch Times

A new accreditation system has been launched to tackle the time taken to transfer savings, investments and pensions from one provider to another.

Andrew Marker, Star Steering Group Chairman, said: “This has been a test of building consensus and making progress and if it was easy it would have been tackled years ago. I’m delighted that ‘after a period of intense and sustained work, the industry has come together to advance an agenda whose goal is to improve outcomes for customers.

“Star measures the performance of companies when executing transfers, which provides regulators, clients and their financial advisors with clear evidence of company behavior and shows a clear commitment to focus on improving their performance. This creates a competitive advantage for the organizations involved in Star, who lead and drive industry change in change.

Launched in 2019, Star is a partnership between Criterion and Tex and aims to promote best practices among providers when moving client cash and assets from one company to another.

To date, 76 companies have registered with Star and of these, 18 are now accredited. These companies belong to the following groups:

• Isa and GIA
• Personal pensions, Sipp and Ssas
• Occupational pensions
• Asset managers

Star Accreditation is designed to measure and accredit transfer performance across the industry.

There are three levels of Star Accreditation: Gold, Silver and Bronze, which are designed to both reward good performance and encourage performance improvement.

Companies were rewarded in 2022 for submitting at least nine consecutive months of transfer data.

Rewards are based on certain factors, one being that one area of ​​good performance cannot outweigh the poor performance of another.

They are also measured on a range of key performance indicators, not just overall transfer time, as there are also “many mitigating factors to consider when reviewing an organization’s overall performance” .

Star concluded that the best way to judge an organization fairly was to have a point-based measurement system in place, with a company being scored on several key areas such as:

• The average number of days to transfer a client’s assets
• How they communicate with their customers during this journey
• What percentage of their electronic transfers have been reported for accreditation.

The average transfer times for bronze, silver and gold accredited transfers in each group are:

  • Isa – 12.7 days
  • IAM – 14.8 days
  • Sipp Ssas Personal Board – 4.2 Days
  • Occupational pension – 7.4 days

Rob Yuille, head of long-term savings policy at the Association of British Insurers, said these changes between providers are a key part of good customer service and healthy competition.

He added: “People will only transfer pensions and investments a few times in their lifetime, so it’s really important to get it right, for each customer’s experience, for each company’s reputation and for the reputation of the company. whole sector.