Scottish Widows intermediaries director Simon Massey and employee benefits and direct distribution director Andy Barton have left the firm following a restructure as the provider focuses on supporting advisers and employers through automatic enrolment.
The restructure, led by pensions and investments director Ronnie Taylor, will see the creation of a new specialist auto-enrolment team to work with advisers and employers from 1 January. Massey and Barton have left the provider as a result.
Taylor says: “By the end of 2013, we will have helped around 300 large companies work their way through auto-enrolment. But the main challenge lies ahead with smaller employers, which may lack the knowledge and expertise associated with the changes, reaching their individual staging dates from as early as next year.
“Our primary objective is to support employers and advisers through this transition, helping them to navigate through the auto-enrolment journey, with the end goal of ensuring that an increased number of people in the UK are saving towards a more comfortable retirement.
“It is of paramount importance that we have the right structure and strategy in place to deliver this.”
On Massey and Barton’s departure, Taylor says: “Simon and Andy have played an instrumental role in building Scottish Widows into the force it is today. We have been able to develop the new strategy on that foundation and we wish them all the best for the future.”
Corporate Benefits Consulting director Allan Maxwell says: “Insurance companies have been very slow in getting themselves set for auto-enrolment. This might have been as a result of coping with the RDR but the reality is that there will be tens of thousands of employers being staged next year and the majority of providers are only just getting round to putting their offering in place.
“I hope these changes mean Widows will focus on improving its adviser offering.”
Last month, Scottish Widows launched a tool to provide advisers with a template for taking employers through the auto-enrolment process.
An estimated 30,000 employers will reach their auto-enrolment staging date in 2014.