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Best pension communications

Manchester Airports Group
M.A.G (Stansted) Pension Scheme

Mark Cliff, reward director at Manchester Airports Group

This award recognises employers that have implemented a successful strategy that helps to boost employee knowledge, and understanding, of pensions and the need to plan for retirement. Manchester Airports Group faced a difficult task in communicating the business case for changes to future service benefits and the impact of the change on individuals ahead of a consultation process and trade union ballot. The judges were impressed with its creative, visual approach, which included the use of aircraft and airport themed stickers on walls in the workplace. Not only did this help it to achieve its aim and obtain 94% employee buy-in, they felt it has created a fantastic foundation for future communications.

The judges said: “It delivered what it set out to do very well. This was a horrible thing to have to do and it has come out of it very well. It really went the extra mile. This entry is about a difficult message, a communications strategy that meant something to its workforce and results that are outstanding. Given what it had to achieve, the outcome is fantastic. It obviously did something right.”

The winner said: “We went for a highly visual and innovative communication strategy. Rather than doing normal powerpoint posters we put big visuals on the wall such as stickers and used pictorials to boost communication. “It was all about engaging with people and giving everyone every opportunity to ask questions that they want but also keeping it simple. We made sure that the communications were at a level everyone could understand. “The award is about recognising all the people that were involved, the members and how they engaged, the trade unions, the team and the business that backed us to do it in the right way.”

Runners up
  • Southern Water, Pensions engagement for Southern Water DC members
  • Telefónica, Telefónica Pension Website (Entered by Caburn Hope)
  • Telegraph Media Group, Telegraph Staff Pension Plan (Entered by Shilling)