The Pensions Dashboards Programme (PDP) has appointed Capgemini for the delivery of its central technical architecture.

The firm will deliver the pensions finder service, consent and authorisation service, and governance register, which will form a key part of the pensions dashboard ecosystem, the programme announced.

Capgemini will partner with Origo to deliver the specified elements of the central digital architecture. Its bid was successful due to its quality and value for money, plus the credibility and expertise of both parties to deliver the contract, PDP said.

The appointment comes amid industry doubts that the programme – which holds out the promise of allowing individuals to see all their retirement savings on one digital platform – could be delivered by 2023.

Research from the Pensions Management Institute’s (PMI) latest PMI Pulse survey showed that pensions professionals are overwhelmingly sceptical that the industry will deliver the pensions dashboard by the target date of 2023.

Its data revealed that more than three quarters (78%) of respondents stated that they were not confident that the PDP would be completed by 2023 as pledged.

The survey also shows that only 56% of respondents believe their scheme or the scheme they advise will be able to provide the required data for the dashboard in 2023.

This compares with 36% of respondents who doubt their scheme can provide dashboard data in two years, suggesting there has been a significant loss of confidence that schemes will be able to provide the data for the dashboard ahead of the deadline.

Lesley Alexander, PMI’s president, said that the introduction of the long-awaited PDP “will be a seismic shift in the pensions industry”.

“However, our research suggests the industry faces some significant hurdles before it is launched. The main stumbling blocks are likely to be the cost of providing the data and the resources required,” he said.

Despite these challenges, he added, the benefits of getting the dashboard up and running would “outweigh the cost of its development”.

“To ensure the Dashboard is delivered efficiently, it is important that the Pensions Dashboard Programme works closely with all those involved in the industry in meaningful collaboration and sharing best practice,” Alexander said.

“The main stumbling blocks are likely to be the cost of providing the data and the resources required”

Lesley Alexander, PMI’s president

Tim Middleton, director of policy and external affairs at PMI, said: “There still seems to be no clear agreement as to what kind of service the first version of the Dashboard is to provide: whether it will it seek just to trace where members’ accrued benefits are held or provide information about the benefits themselves remains unclear. Resolving this would at least provide some clarity for the public.”

Development and test phase

CapGemini’s appointment marks the end of the first phase of the PDP, which will now move into the development and test phase.

Richard James, PDP’s programme director at MaPS, said: “PDP now formally moves into its delivery phase, and I am looking forward to working with our new supplier, and across the industry, to make a success of pensions dashboards, and enable individuals to take control of their retirement planning.”

Earlier this summer PDP also signed up seven data providers for an initial testing phase, a step hailed as a “milestone” by one of the providers.

Guy Opperman, minister for pensions, said: “This is a crucial milestone for the dashboards programme, taking things to the next phase, where the concept starts to become a reality. We’ve already put in place the primary legislation needed to pave the way for pensions dashboards. Now the programme, in partnership with Capgemini and Origo, can start to implement the technical elements, bringing the delivery of the first functioning dashboards even closer.”

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