Which are the best pensions awards to enter?

uk pensions awards chris robinson

Chris Robinson

MD & Founder, Boost Awards

Looking to enter UK pensions awards?

Pensions awards are on the increase, and our own research suggests that – particularly in the case of UK pensions awards – there are a number of reasons for this. We surveyed over 400 business decision-makers, and the results showed that over 72.1% are influenced by awards when choosing providers of financial services. In addition, a massive 81.0% are influenced by awards when choosing HR services (including employee benefits). With that in mind, is it any wonder that awards in the pensions industry are not only highly sought after, but are also highly competitive? In this guide to pensions awards, I’ll outline all of the major awards for the pension industry, and suggest which of those might be of most benefit to enter depending on what you are trying to say by winning a pensions award – and to which target audience.    

The world of pensions awards is an unusual one, in that it has four distinct stakeholder groups:

1. The investment asset and fund management community

These guys are primarily judged in terms of the money they generate from their funds, so tend not to go for awards as much.

2. The pensions providers

This group of companies are the household names like Standard Life and Scottish Widows, as well as specialists.

3. Intermediaries

This is the most award-hungry group. It includes consultants, IFAs, third-party pensions administrators and employee benefits providers. All the members of this group love awards as a means of differentiating their platforms, expertise and offerings.

4. HR functions within a business

This is the HR department looking for recognition, such as ‘we offer an award winning pension scheme’ or an ‘award- winning benefits scheme’.  

As such, a major factor in selecting which pensions awards to enter is who you want to be sitting at the awards dinner with. Is it your peers, or your target audience?

Once you’ve made this decision, you need to pick the categories that work for you. Ensure you pick carefully chosen and well evaluated projects, initiatives or case studies to maximise your chances of success in the competitions.

How many pensions awards are there?

In all, within our awards database, there are 12 pensions-focused awards schemes, another 30 schemes with a pensions-related category, and a massive 81 financial services schemes with a fund-related category. Below is a summary of those you should consider entering, based on your objectives.

To complicate matters, many schemes have categories that welcome more than one of the stakeholder groups mentioned earlier, and as such, some awards appear more than once in the lists below. These awards could be classified as ‘financial services’ or ‘HR’ in our database.

To make it easy for you to navigate this list, we’ve split it up into your priority awards, depending on what you are trying to say.

uk pensions awards

“We surveyed over 400 business decision-makers, and the results showed that over 72.1% are influenced by awards when choosing providers of financial services. In addition, a massive 81.0% are influenced by awards when choosing HR services (including employee benefits).” 

I want to say “we are a leading intermediary”

Probably the most active when it comes to entering awards is the intermediary group. This is because they work in a competitive marketplace where it is hard to differentiate from competitors – so winning awards is mission-critical.

If you’re happy for the awards dinner to be packed with your competitors, but you have an award which is clearly focused on what you do, then consider:

The Corporate Adviser Awards: These UK awards (run by Centaur) have pushed back their deadline a lot; previously a pre-Christmas scheme, there are two deadlines: February for Adviser categories, and March for Provider categories. By Adviser they mean Pension Adviser, Healthcare Adviser etc. By provider, they mean companies like Aviva, Bupa etc. which would be the Group Pension Provider or Healthcare Provider. This is a popular award scheme, but the event is very much attended by the intermediaries rather than the end clients (the pensions community in particular).

The Money Marketing Awards: Another award scheme by Centaur, but this time affiliated with Money Marketing magazine, the scheme (December deadline) is very much focused on intermediaries, including mortgages, protection, and wealth management, but they have a very strong emphasis on pensions. Despite the name, they are not as much about marketing as you would think. They have an issue that we have raised with them repeatedly – they charge winners and finalists for the use of the logo. This is not something we endorse, and something fortunately not common amongst credible awards.

The Pension and Investment Provider Awards (PIPA) Awards, run by the Financial Times, has a deadline of February. Here the categories are very different and focused on schemes and service providers – so much more compatible with intermediaries (i.e. employee benefits consultants, third party administrators, communication specialists).

The UK Pensions Awards: These UK awards have a deadline of December and a host of categories suitable for intermediaries, including awards for individuals, consultancies, advisers, pension providers and their innovations. The most competitive category we find here is Third-Party Administrator of the Year.

Then there are two schemes which we cover later in the section for HR practitioners, but which are extremely popular here too:

The Employee Benefits Awards: Run by Employee Benefits Magazine, and with a December deadline (that often extends into January), these are the most competitive and popular of these awards. See later for details.

The Workplace Savings & Benefits (WSB) Awards: These UK awards, run by Incisive Business Media, have a deadline of March. The good news for intermediaries is that, unlike other HR-targeted awards, they have a majority of categories for consultants and providers to the industry.

I want to say “we are great at managing funds”

There is no shortage of awards for the pension fund managers and their investment strategies. In fact, our database has over 80 awards in the financial services awards list referencing ‘fund’ within the categories.

There are two awards schemes that are clearly for pensions fund management.

Firstly, The European Pensions Awards (deadline in February). These awards are arguably the most prestigious in Europe for pension fund managers. Unlike other pensions awards, or financial services awards referencing funds, these categories are very much focused on pension funds, pension fund managers and pension fund management companies.

Then there is The UK Pensions Awards (registration in December, entry deadline in January). Another scheme squarely focused on pensions (and mentioned elsewhere in this article), here the categories are far broader, though they do have a number of awards explicitly for pension fund managers.

Other pension awards schemes that mention pensions and funds within the categories include:

I want to say “we are a great pension provider”

Next, let’s have a look at awards for the pension providers. Here the awards are surprisingly less numerate. The biggest ones are:

The UK Pensions Awards. Arguably the most important scheme for this industry, in the UK, these awards (deadline December) include categories for individuals and pension providers, not to mention their innovations among others for intermediaries and employers.

The next important ones are The Pensions Age Awards run by the leading pensions magazine of the same name. This is a relative youngster of an award scheme, having been running for six years now, but is highly credible and keenly fought over by the leading pension providers. You will need to enter by the November deadline to try and win coveted awards, such as Pension Provider of the Year.  

As mentioned earlier, Pension and Investment Provider Awards (PIPA) are run by the Financial Times. This is another UK-only scheme, this time with a deadline of February. It includes a number of suitable categories for the pension providers – for example, Multi-employer DC provider of the Year.

uk pensions awards consumers

In a market where it is difficult to differentiate from your competitors, consumers will undoubtedly be impressed if you manage to win ‘Pension Provider of the Year’ at one of the most credible award schemes.

Within the industry, it is also worth being aware of The Moneywise Pensions Awards. There is no entry process with these; instead, a panel of independent judges selects the winners and runners up, which are then announced in August. Shortlists are formed based on a number of data and analysis sources. 

Another plan of action to evidence how you are a great pension provider could be to explore winning individual awards, for example The Professional Pensions Women in Pensions Awards. These awards are aimed at highlighting exceptional work by women in a sector in which they have traditionally been under-represented, as well as highlighting those providers that are striving to change this. The deadline for these occurs in February each year. 

Other than these schemes, pension providers often consider the awards below for specific client or intermediary projects.

I want to say “my business offers a great pension scheme”


Finally, there is a group of people particularly interested in pensions awards that are not actually in the pensions industry. These are the HR professionals within businesses, who are keen to strengthen their employee value proposition. Here, being able to say “we offer an award-winning pension scheme” or an “award-winning benefits scheme” is of measurable value when attempting to attract and retain talent.

This is why schemes like The Employee Benefits Awards (December deadline that often extends into January) are so popular – not just with the vendors, but with their clients, too. This award scheme is in fact the most popular award scheme of the year for us here at Boost. This is because, by luck or good judgement, the name of the scheme appeals to benefits vendors, intermediaries and HR departments alike – three communities all fully aware of the value of a well-named, credible award. The scheme is unusual though in that, rather than a lavish awards dinner, it has just a Friday daytime event with a lunch buffet in June. It’s a fun and well-attended event, but one that belies the popularity of the scheme itself. The other limitation is that they focus squarely on initiatives, rather than vendors or employers as a whole.

The next popular scheme for this community is The Workplace Savings & Benefits (WSB) Awards. This scheme is growing in popularity and, because of its timing (register in March, deadline in May), is often an opportunity to rewrite employee benefits awards entries. However, they have a distinct difference – the categories are not just for benefits initiatives. They have three themes: Employer Awards, which include the project and scheme categories, but the majority of categories are for the consultants and providers.

This community should also consider the Benefits Initiatives of the Year and Best Benefits Strategy of the big HR awards. We won’t list them here, but instead please see our article entitled Which are the best HR Awards to enter?

Next steps

Do any of these make you think “That’s us” or “We could win that”? If so, then I recommend you let us help with the creation of your written submission. We’ve been helping businesses enter pensions awards since 2006 and are more experienced than any other agency in the world when it comes to these awards. Details of our award entry writing services can be found here.

I would be happy to give you a call to help you double-check your chances of success and explain our pricing options. You can contact Boost via our contact form or email me directly via chris.robinson@boost-awards.co.uk

I look forward to hearing from you.

Chris.

P.S. Still wanting more? Please consider the following options for inspiration:

Boost – a helping hand entering awards

Boost Awards is the world’s first and largest award entry consultancy, having helped clients – from SMEs to multinationals – win over 1,300 credible business awards, including all of the pensions award schemes listed. Increase your chances of success significantly – call Boost on +44(0)1273 258703 today for a no-obligation chat about awards.

(C) This article was written by Chris Robinson and is the intellectual property of award entry consultants
Boost Awards

uk pensions awards boost award entry writers

Awards List

Please take a look on our UK Awards List and International Awards List websites where you can find many more financial services awards (amongst thousands of others covering all areas of business).

uk pensions awards awards list

Which are the best pensions awards to enter?

uk pensions awards chris robinson

Chris Robinson

MD & Founder, Boost

Looking to enter UK pensions awards?

Pensions awards are on the increase, and our own research suggests that – particularly in the case of UK pensions awards – there are a number of reasons for this. We surveyed over 400 business decision-makers, and the results showed that over 72.1% are influenced by awards when choosing providers of financial services. In addition, a massive 81.0% are influenced by awards when choosing HR services (including employee benefits). With that in mind, is it any wonder that awards in the pensions industry are not only highly sought after, but are also highly competitive? In this guide to pensions awards, I’ll outline all of the major awards for the pension industry, and suggest which of those might be of most benefit to enter depending on what you are trying to say by winning a pensions award – and to which target audience.    

The world of pensions awards is an unusual one, in that it has four distinct stakeholder groups:

1. The investment asset and fund management community

These guys are primarily judged in terms of the money they generate from their funds, so tend not to go for awards as much.

2. The pensions providers

This group of companies are the household names like Standard Life and Scottish Widows, as well as specialists.

3. Intermediaries

This is the most award-hungry group. It includes consultants, IFAs, third-party pensions administrators and employee benefits providers. All the members of this group love awards as a means of differentiating their platforms, expertise and offerings.

4. HR functions within a business

This is the HR department looking for recognition, such as ‘we offer an award winning pension scheme’ or an ‘award- winning benefits scheme’.  

As such, a major factor in selecting which pensions awards to enter is who you want to be sitting at the awards dinner with. Is it your peers, or your target audience?

Once you’ve made this decision, you need to pick the categories that work for you. Ensure you pick carefully chosen and well evaluated projects, initiatives or case studies to maximise your chances of success in the competitions.

uk pensions awards consumers

“We surveyed over 400 business decision-makers, and the results showed that over 72.1% are influenced by awards when choosing providers of financial services. In addition, a massive 81.0% are influenced by awards when choosing HR services (including employee benefits).” 

How many pensions awards are there?

In all, within our awards database, there are 12 pensions-focused awards schemes, another 30 schemes with a pensions-related category, and a massive 81 financial services schemes with a fund-related category. Below is a summary of those you should consider entering, based on your objectives.

To complicate matters, many schemes have categories that welcome more than one of the stakeholder groups mentioned earlier, and as such, some awards appear more than once in the lists below. These awards could be classified as ‘financial services’ or ‘HR’ in our database.

To make it easy for you to navigate this list, we’ve split it up into your priority awards, depending on what you are trying to say.

I want to say “we are a leading intermediary”

Probably the most active when it comes to entering awards is the intermediary group. This is because they work in a competitive marketplace where it is hard to differentiate from competitors – so winning awards is mission-critical.

If you’re happy for the awards dinner to be packed with your competitors, but you have an award which is clearly focused on what you do, then consider:

The Corporate Adviser Awards: These UK awards (run by Centaur) have pushed back their deadline a lot; previously a pre-Christmas scheme, there are two deadlines: February for Adviser categories, and March for Provider categories. By Adviser they mean Pension Adviser, Healthcare Adviser etc. By provider, they mean companies like Aviva, Bupa etc. which would be the Group Pension Provider or Healthcare Provider. This is a popular award scheme, but the event is very much attended by the intermediaries rather than the end clients (the pensions community in particular).

The Money Marketing Awards: Another award scheme by Centaur, but this time affiliated with Money Marketing magazine, the scheme (December deadline) is very much focused on intermediaries, including mortgages, protection, and wealth management, but they have a very strong emphasis on pensions. Despite the name, they are not as much about marketing as you would think. They have an issue that we have raised with them repeatedly – they charge winners and finalists for the use of the logo. This is not something we endorse, and something fortunately not common amongst credible awards.

The Pension and Investment Provider Awards (PIPA) Awards, run by the Financial Times, has a deadline of February. Here the categories are very different and focused on schemes and service providers – so much more compatible with intermediaries (i.e. employee benefits consultants, third party administrators, communication specialists).

The UK Pensions Awards: These UK awards have a deadline of December and a host of categories suitable for intermediaries, including awards for individuals, consultancies, advisers, pension providers and their innovations. The most competitive category we find here is Third-Party Administrator of the Year.

Then there are two schemes which we cover later in the section for HR practitioners, but which are extremely popular here too:

The Employee Benefits Awards: Run by Employee Benefits Magazine, and with a December deadline (that often extends into January), these are the most competitive and popular of these awards. See later for details.

The Workplace Savings & Benefits (WSB) Awards: These UK awards, run by Incisive Business Media, have a deadline of March. The good news for intermediaries is that, unlike other HR-targeted awards, they have a majority of categories for consultants and providers to the industry.

I want to say “we are great at managing funds”

There is no shortage of awards for the pension fund managers and their investment strategies. In fact, our database has over 80 awards in the financial services awards list referencing ‘fund’ within the categories.

There are two awards schemes that are clearly for pensions fund management.

Firstly, The European Pensions Awards (deadline in February). These awards are arguably the most prestigious in Europe for pension fund managers. Unlike other pensions awards, or financial services awards referencing funds, these categories are very much focused on pension funds, pension fund managers and pension fund management companies.

Then there is The UK Pensions Awards (registration in December, entry deadline in January). Another scheme squarely focused on pensions (and mentioned elsewhere in this article), here the categories are far broader, though they do have a number of awards explicitly for pension fund managers.

Other pension awards schemes that mention pensions and funds within the categories include:

I want to say “we are a great pension provider”

Next, let’s have a look at awards for the pension providers. Here the awards are surprisingly less numerate. The biggest ones are:

The UK Pensions Awards. Arguably the most important scheme for this industry, in the UK, these awards (deadline December) include categories for individuals and pension providers, not to mention their innovations among others for intermediaries and employers.

The next important ones are The Pensions Age Awards run by the leading pensions magazine of the same name. This is a relative youngster of an award scheme, having been running for six years now, but is highly credible and keenly fought over by the leading pension providers. You will need to enter by the November deadline to try and win coveted awards, such as Pension Provider of the Year.  

As mentioned earlier, Pension and Investment Provider Awards (PIPA) are run by the Financial Times. This is another UK-only scheme, this time with a deadline of February. It includes a number of suitable categories for the pension providers – for example, Multi-employer DC provider of the Year.

uk pensions awards consumers

In a market where it is difficult to differentiate from your competitors, consumers will undoubtedly be impressed if you manage to win ‘Pension Provider of the Year’ at one of the most credible award schemes.

Within the industry, it is also worth being aware of The Moneywise Pensions Awards. There is no entry process with these; instead, a panel of independent judges selects the winners and runners up, which are then announced in August. Shortlists are formed based on a number of data and analysis sources. 

Another plan of action to evidence how you are a great pension provider could be to explore winning individual awards, for example The Professional Pensions Women in Pensions Awards. These awards are aimed at highlighting exceptional work by women in a sector in which they have traditionally been under-represented, as well as highlighting those providers that are striving to change this. The deadline for these occurs in February each year. 

Other than these schemes, pension providers often consider the awards below for specific client or intermediary projects.

I want to say “my business offers a great pension scheme”

Finally, there is a group of people particularly interested in pensions awards that are not actually in the pensions industry. These are the HR professionals within businesses, who are keen to strengthen their employee value proposition. Here, being able to say “we offer an award-winning pension scheme” or an “award-winning benefits scheme” is of measurable value when attempting to attract and retain talent.

This is why schemes like The Employee Benefits Awards (December deadline that often extends into January) are so popular – not just with the vendors, but with their clients, too. This award scheme is in fact the most popular award scheme of the year for us here at Boost. This is because, by luck or good judgement, the name of the scheme appeals to benefits vendors, intermediaries and HR departments alike – three communities all fully aware of the value of a well-named, credible award. The scheme is unusual though in that, rather than a lavish awards dinner, it has just a Friday daytime event with a lunch buffet in June. It’s a fun and well-attended event, but one that belies the popularity of the scheme itself. The other limitation is that they focus squarely on initiatives, rather than vendors or employers as a whole.

The next popular scheme for this community is The Workplace Savings & Benefits (WSB) Awards. This scheme is growing in popularity and, because of its timing (register in March, deadline in May), is often an opportunity to rewrite employee benefits awards entries. However, they have a distinct difference – the categories are not just for benefits initiatives. They have three themes: Employer Awards, which include the project and scheme categories, but the majority of categories are for the consultants and providers.

This community should also consider the Benefits Initiatives of the Year and Best Benefits Strategy of the big HR awards. We won’t list them here, but instead please see our article entitled Which are the best HR Awards to enter?

Next steps

Do any of these make you think “That’s us” or “We could win that”? If so, then I recommend you let us help with the creation of your written submission. We’ve been helping businesses enter pensions awards since 2006 and are more experienced than any other agency in the world when it comes to these awards. Details of our award entry writing services can be found here.

I would be happy to give you a call to help you double-check your chances of success and explain our pricing options. You can contact Boost via our contact form or email me directly via chris.robinson@boost-awards.co.uk

I look forward to hearing from you.

Chris.

P.S. Still wanting more? Please consider the following options for inspiration:

Boost – a helping hand entering awards

Boost Awards is the world’s first and largest award entry consultancy, having helped clients – from SMEs to multinationals – win over 1,300 credible business awards, including all of the pensions award schemes listed. Increase your chances of success significantly – call Boost on +44(0)1273 258703 today for a no-obligation chat about awards.

(C) This article was written by Chris Robinson and is the intellectual property of award entry consultants
Boost Awards

uk pensions awards boost award entry writers

Awards List

Please take a look on our UK Awards List and International Awards List websites where you can find many more financial services awards (amongst thousands of others covering all areas of business).

Looking for awards to enter?

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