UK - Aon Consulting is attempting to tap into what it believes will be a growing call for outsourced administration when pension reform come into force in 2012, by expanding and relaunching its admin team.

The firm notes one-third of its takeover came from the admin team in 2007, but officials say the private pension administration was little known publicly so they have their sights set enhancing the the existing £10m (£12.5m) technology system and injected fresh impetus and funds.

More specifically, Stuart Heatley, managing director of the third-party admin service, has created a client relationship management unit, to be headed by Ian Bloxham,  while Colin Hamilton will lead a new pensions administration commercial team, in a bid to become what it sees as the leading pension administration team for the British private sector by 2012.

At least £10m has already been invested in the firm's aquila administrator operating platform, and a further £1.5m has been pledged to be spent on functionality of the system this year, so the firm can begin to target larger in-house pension fund clients.

Aon will be up against strong competition in this new push, as there are several big names vying for this pension fund admin business in the UK, most notably RPMI, the administration arm of the Railways pension fund, alongside with Xafinity and Capita.

That said, Heatley and Hamilton have extensive experience of the pensions admin market, having joined Aon from rival Capita.

Heatley claims the firm has spent some time reassessing the system in the hope it can deliver what pension funds and corporate sponsors need.

"The aim of our journey is to deliver a service that is dictated by our clients and their scheme members, not by the industry's limitations. To that end, we are not only talking to trustees, pensions managers and scheme members about the service they want, but actively involving them in service development focus groups and member surveys."

Hamilton told IPE the growth target of 2012 is unrelated to the legislated arrival of personal accounts, as he anticipates there will be less emphasis on bundled packages among the larger private sector employers.

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