This course is designed to help pension trustees become more proficient and effective in their important and demanding roles. The course has a practical focus and goes beyond technical knowledge to focus on developing the skills needed to be a more effective trustee.
Course participants are challenged to make decisions, enabling them to perform more confidently in future boardroom discussions, and approach trustee decisions in an informed and objective way.
The Confident DB trusteeship course focuses on the journey trustees take through the life of a DB Pension scheme, and the decisions they must make along the way. It is held over two one-day modules. The content covers:
• Governance – consider issues around how the trustee group is organised and the potential for conflicts of interest
• Making decisions – how to consider a request from the employer to change the scheme
• Investment – looking at the different levers for de-risking investments, and the practical issues as to how this can be done
• Covenant – how to assess covenant and how to deal with a worsening employer position
• Integrated funding – how the trustees approach a valuation process, taking into account investment and covenant issues as well, and also how a negotiation process with the sponsor might develop
• Journey planning – continuing the integrated funding theme, how the trustees might frame a long term objective and put in place mitigation against adverse experience (e.g. contingent assets)
• De-risking – continuing the de-risking theme from Module 1, but considering how this fits with a long term objective, what the options are and how they might be implemented in practice
• Liability management – consider the various options for de-risking the liabilities (e.g. via bulk exercises) and also managing longevity risk
• End-game – what a buy-in/buy-out process looks like and what it means for members and the scheme
The modules can be taken individually, but we recommend that both are completed in order.
The course is primarily designed for trustees, but can also be an ideal learning opportunity for HR and Finance teams who want to improve the management of their employee benefits.
The course does not deliver basic technical training for new trustees as this is available through the Regulator’s Trustee Toolkit. We will assume that course participants will have completed the Toolkit – or have an equivalent level of recent and relevant experience.
If you have not completed the Toolkit, Mercer offers a ‘Toolkit Blitz’ that you may find useful. Find out more here