While continuing to play a role in helping members accumulate super, funds must also be looking at implementing strategies to assist retiree members in managing lifestyle expectations and longevity risk. What outcomes will satisfy members, government, and regulators?

There’s a myriad of components to consider as funds (and members) try to navigate this unchartered retirement phase without a formal roadmap – as yet. So, to help super professionals gain a better understanding of what’s involved, ASFA—with partners TAL, Challenger and KWM—is excited to present a thoughtful program, hearing from experts and members themselves, in a special inaugural one-day event focusing on retirement.

How did we get here and where can we go? 

A keynote address by Jeremy Cooper, former Deputy Chair of ASIC (2004-2009) and former Chair of the Super System Review (2009-2010) will set the scene. Nearly ten years since he delivered his landmark Super System Review report, Jeremy says there are some key issues to overcome for funds to deliver meaningful retirement income solutions and meet government and regulator expectations.

He will be looking at what has led the industry to this point, the potential problems given the dispersion of product designs to date, and how to measure solutions against member goals and a host of other criteria.

Do we need to look deeper at member behaviour? Are funds progressing in collecting sufficient member data to tailor solutions to their requirements? Do we fully understand life expectancies and their impact for funds implementing lifetime income solutions?

Given the Treasurer has announced a discussion paper will be issued in coming weeks, canvassing problems with financial advice, customer service and retirement income strategies, what does that mean for funds in the short term? What are the scenarios we are likely to face this decade? Join Jeremy and chair Maree Pallisco from EY for an absorbing session.

This will be followed by TAL’s Ashton Jones, Ben Hillier from AMP and noted academic Dr Geoff Warren, will talk about retirement defaults, aiming to debunk the myths and foster understanding of the benefits, look at how other markets have thought about defaults, and discuss auto-enrolment for retirees, from both member and trustee perspectives.

Next, three fund members – Tina Vogdanos representing the 30s cohort, Nick La Galle (40s) and Tracey Matthews (50s) – will join a panel discussion chaired by Deloitte’s Andrew Boal, reviewing how the world of work has changed with implications for working age Australians today and into the future. They will share their financial journeys so far and talk candidly about the impacts on their hopes and needs for retirement – as well as how their funds could help them.

Putting member retirement outcomes front and centre

When looking at retirement income strategies, it’s imperative to understand the regulators’ expectations. Following the release of their thematic review looking at how superannuation trustees are supporting their members under the retirement income covenant and how strategies are being executed, representatives from APRA and ASIC will be taking to the stage. The panel comprising Mike Cornwell and Valya Prouzos from APRA, and Jane Eccleston from ASIC will be chaired by KWM’s Sarah Yu.

The next session, chaired by Michael Quinn of QMV, will take us to the world of algorithms to learn ways to best personalise outcomes for customers. We’ll be stepping outside the super industry to hear from Microsoft’s Susan O’Neill who will explain how data capture helps organisations like Netflix make immediate recommendations for the next bingeworthy shows and explore where there may be opportunities for superannuation to leverage members’ online interactions and offer ways members could enhance their retirement outcome. How can the super industry ‘tech up’ and switch from a product-driven approach to a member-driven, hyper-personalised approach?

In session six, AustralianSuper’s Shawn Blackmore, Anne Fuchs of ART and Jacki Ellis from Aware Super will take part in a panel discussion chaired by WTW’s Nick Callil to see how the advent of the Chief Retirement Officer can help deliver a holistic offering that all members can access, for any size account balance. Do funds need to look at their operating model to create the optimal conditions to deliver on retirement expectations and outcomes?

In session seven, Aaron Minney, and Meher Edibam from Challenger will join Equip Super’s Alexis Harrison to discuss whether retirees are reluctant to spend their super and why, despite the safety net offered by the Age Pension. The panel will look at how we help members to spend their money in a way that delivers the retirement they want.

The super and aged care debate will be up for discussion in session eight, following recent suggestions that part of superannuation should be ‘ring fenced’ to provide aged care. Professor Briony Dow from the National Ageing Research Institute and Mercer’s Will Burkitt will discuss the role super can, or should, play as members and their families age. With the average fund member expecting at least 20 years in retirement, can funds innovate to deliver key services and benefits? Is innovation precluded by the sole purpose test? There’s much to consider.

The final session will be about advice. Having identified the numerous ways funds need to assist their members to navigate retirement, the need to provide advice is of vital importance. With the Government expecting funds to play a significant role in providing advice, at a time when financial adviser numbers are plummeting, how can they deliver this vital service in a holistic way and at scale? Jon Standen from HESTA, Sara Dix from Vanguard, Melinda Howes from KPMG and chair Lara Bourguignon from Entregar Partners will share their perspectives and insights.

The Spotlight on Retirement event aims to provide delegates with a unique, multi-faceted view of retirement issues through fund, member, and regulator lenses to help them prepare for the uncharted post-accumulation phase ahead. It will also be a great opportunity to connect with peers and counterparts between sessions and during other breaks and networking opportunities throughout the day.

You can find out more about the speakers the program sessions or register here