THERE ARE few products that blossom when the economy is feeling a chill, but there is no denying the recent downturn has done little to harm the employer-paid cash plan market. With the corporate market responsible for the lion’s share of growth, we have not surprisingly seen an evolution in what cash plans offer to employers. Advisers want cash plans to be seen increasingly as an employer benefit, as well as one for employees, and providers have responded and are continuing to do so.
Adviser opinion is virtually unanimous on an increased role in the workplace in the future, but if the full potential of corporate cash plans is to be realised, we need to see more from providers - more transparency, greater harmony with other benefits and an increased focus on return on investment.
Happily, providers seem to understand this and appear open to bringing innovation to this fast-developing market.
But the onus is not just on providers to change the way they think. Many advisers need to take a fresh look at the way they view cash plans if they are to maximise the potential buried within their own businesses and deliver a full range of cost-effective solutions to their clients.
The corporate cash plan’s time has clearly come - half of the adviser delegates at the round table event covered in this supplement see the sector growing by 10 per cent a year or more in the near future. With a bit of imagination, corporate cash plans can be one class of benefit to
thrive through the big chill.
John Greenwood, Editor