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About PQM

What is PQM?

PQM is a standard that recognises high quality defined contribution (DC) pension schemes. It is designed to raise confidence in workplace pensions, help employers demonstrate the value of their scheme to current and future employees, and help employees recognise that their scheme is of a good quality.

Who launched PQM?

PQM was launched by the Pensions & Lifetime Savings Association (then the NAPF) in September 2009.

What is PQM's corporate structure?

PQM is a not-for-profit organisations wholly owned by the Pensions & Lifetime Savings Association. It is run by Board of Directors who look after strategic development of the initiative and the standards. It also acts as independent appeals panel for complex applications.

Current PQM Board  

Why does PQM exist?

PQM is designed to raise confidence in workplace pensions, help employers demonstrate the value of their scheme to current and future employees, and help employees recognise that their scheme is of a good quality.

How is PQM benefiting employers?

Employers use PQM to:

  • benchmark their scheme against competitors
  • demonstrate they are a responsible employer
  • attract and retain high calibre employees
  • engage employees with the pension scheme by demonstrating its value
  • help to encourage employees to save for a comfortable retirement

Employers are able to use the PQM logo on all scheme communications such as websites, annual statements, headed paper, recruitment advertising, etc, once the scheme qualifies for PQM. The name of the scheme will also appear on the PQM website.

How is PQM benefiting employees?

PQM helps employees easily recognise that the scheme on offer has been independently verified as being of excellent quality in terms of contributions, governance and communications. This is particularly important in auto-enrolment environment where all employers have to offer, and contribute, to a pension scheme.

How is PQM making a difference?

As PQM's influence grows, so is the number of schemes that are changing their set up in order to comply with the PQM standards. This happens in all areas - from increasing contributions, through to improving governance arrangements and communications.

There are also providers that have changed their communications for all clients' scheme members so they can comply with PQM.

Can PQM help us to set up a new scheme?

No, PQM is not a consultancy. Although we cannot help you set up a new scheme, we can give you tips on what you need to do in order for the scheme to meet the PQM standards. Many companies found our help in this area valuable.

Who supports the PQM?

PQM is widely supported by the Government, the pensions and the HR industry.

Why should I apply?

In the auto-enrolment environment it is becoming increasingly important to differentiate a good pension scheme from one offering the minimum required by regulations. PQM can be very valuable in this area.

Main reasons why employers apply for PQM are:

  • benchmark against competitors
  • demonstrate they are a responsible employer
  • attract and retain high calibre employees
  • engage employees with the pension scheme by demonstrating its value
  • help to encourage employees to save for a comfortable retirement

What role does PQM play in the auto-enrolment environment?

Lots of employers tell us that PQM is great way to demonstrate that they've gone above the minimum for auto-enrolment. Having the PQM means that a scheme has higher contributions than the auto-enrolment minimum, good governance, reasonable charges and engaging communications.

Does having PQM mean that my scheme automatically complies with auto-enrolment rules?

No. There are specific qualifying criteria for auto-enrolment schemes. PQM has a different focus. This sets standards for very high quality DC pension schemes rather than the minimum standards set out in legislation.

Can a scheme which is not used for auto-enrolment get the PQM?

Yes. A PQM scheme does need to be used to auto-enrolment. Indeed, employers can use the PQM to differentiate between a foundation scheme used for auto-enrolment and a value added scheme that employees can opt into.

Latest news

06/07/2017 - Consultation on PQM Standards read more

28/02/2017 - Sir Steve Webb and Gregg McClymont join the Pension Quality Mark Board read more

Contact us

T: 020 7601 1770
E: info@pensionqualitymark.org.uk

It’s important that we celebrate initiatives like the PQM which recognise such quality schemes and help to restore confidence in pension provision.
Rt Hon Iain Duncan Smith MP, former Secretary of State for Work and Pensions