Ensign’s pension scheme is all about delivering the best outcomes for and putting full control and knowledge back into the hands of members.

There’s a lot of jargon and terminology surrounding pensions, so here are a few facts about our scheme, whether you’re a current member or totally new to Ensign.

A high-quality, low-cost DC scheme

Ensign is a defined contribution (DC) scheme. This means your retirement fund is determined by how much you and your employer put in and any investment returns. Our team of pension investment experts manage the scheme. You can increase your voluntary contributions, or investment choice at any time. Read more about Ensign here.

Jargon is rife in the pensions market. Ensign believes clear communication is key to helping people not only understand but take control of their pension. Please check out our glossary, which explains some of the pensions terminology on this website.

Easy, 24-hour online access, wherever you are

Members have access at all times to our investment and administration partner Aegon’s online platform TargetPlan where you can monitor and change your investments, update your personal details, track contributions, and find out how much your pension is worth, with calculators to show an estimated view of what you’ll need when you retire.

Supporting you along the way

In addition, Ensign has appointed Aspire Retirement Services (At Retirement specialists and part of Punter Southall Aspire) to provide, if required, guidance or regulated financial advice. Aspire Retirement Services has access to all the Providers and Pension Freedom products or solutions which you may wish to consider when converting your pots and deciding upon the range of options available at retirement. Ensign members are entitled to a free telephone-based consultation with Aspire Retirement Services.

This is offered on a neutral basis i.e. it does not seek to sell you any alternative product or service. The guidance provided can also take account of other benefits you might hold outside of the Ensign Retirement Plan.

Aspire Retirement Services can be contacted at ensignretirementservices@psaspire.com or by calling 01904 236531. Ensign have negotiated special terms for members, and these will depend upon whether you require guidance or advice-based services.

Tools and calculators

A number of tools and calculators are also available for you to use, to assist in your retirement planning, and these can be accessed through the links below:

Longevity Calculator – gives an indication of how long you are likely to live, considering your age and quality of health.

Drawdown Risk Calculator – compares the income you could expect from an annuity, with the same level of income taken from income drawdown.

Quick Income Builder Calculator – helps you see the different levels of income your pension savings could deliver, using combinations of cash withdrawals, income from an annuity and income from income drawdown.

Retirement Budget Calculator – helps calculate your expected monthly expenditure in retirement.

Pension Tax Calculator – helps you work out how much income tax you would need to pay if you take a one-off payment from your pension pot.

In addition, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has introduced a ‘Mid-Life MOT‘ portal, through which you can have access to free, professional and independent guidance to help you with pension planning, working options and staying healthy. This site can be accessed through this link here.

A range of investment options to suit you

Members can choose from a range of carefully selected investment funds tailored to their unique needs. We appreciate it’s not easy to pinpoint the day you will retire, so our ‘target date’ funds allow you to choose from three different lifestyle funds. This means you will be investing in a fund that will reflect your changing investment needs. It does this by gradually altering the investment mix as you approach retirement, moving from higher to lower risk investments over time. There are meanwhile, additional optional investment funds that you can choose to pay part or all of your retirement pot into. These funds invest in a range of specific areas, from emerging markets to corporate bonds.

Flexibility while you’re working…

There are convenient and flexible options throughout your working life. You can transfer your other pension funds, for example those from other jobs you’ve had, into our scheme. You can keep your pot open if you take a break from your employer, and you can also keep contributing to your same Ensign pension pot if you move to another employer, as long as they’re also signed up to Ensign. If that employer is not signed up, your pot can be moved to another arrangement or kept where it is – your choice.

…and when you retire

We offer a range of flexible retirement choices. Options include taking up to 25 per cent as a tax-free cash lump sum, buying an annuity, deciding to draw down your income over time, or a combination of all three.

A future well deserved

We are proud to be introducing this scheme year, tailored guidance to members approaching retirement, to help provide peace of mind around decisions made about how to take your benefits. Through TargetPlan, online tools will enable you to set a retirement goal and see what you need to do to achieve that goal, helping those still in work take control of their pension savings.

Our vital stats at a glance

Download our employees’ info graphic.

New to Ensign?

While employees can’t sign up for a pension with Ensign on an individual basis, we’d encourage you to speak to your employer if you think Ensign might be more suitable than your current pension provider.

If you’re not sure who your pension is currently with, do call us to check whether your employer is part of Ensign already.