Administration Manager - Pensions

Punter Southall

  • Contact: Human Resources
  • Reference: 000265

Job purpose summary

Working closely with the Principals as prime day to day contact for a given portfolio of XPS Administration clients to ensure provision of high quality pension administration and consultancy services. In addition, you will be expected to participate in strategic business changes i.e. critical success factors, implement decisions made by the Board and Principals and understand the issues that affect the performance of the Company.

Key responsibilities & accountabilities

You will be involved in a wide range of pensions administration, management and consultancy tasks. As Administration Manager you will have prime accountability for the service delivery in terms of quality, profit and sustainability for an assigned XPS Administration client portfolio as well as the day to day line management of the designated team. Key responsibilities may include:

  • Assisting or where appropriate leading the provision of pensions administration services for assigned XPS Administration client portfolio
  • Overseeing day to day management of client relationships with trustees and corporate clients, and participation in trustee and client meetings where applicable. Taking a proactive stance to gain an extensive knowledge of assigned client portfolio to ensure client confidence, credibility and trust. Reacting to clients' needs in a positive manner, but maintaining the commercial interests of the business
  • Active participation in XPS Administration's marketing initiatives, new business activities, attending new business pitches and company events. Seeking opportunities to generate additional income from existing client portfolio
  • Providing expert advice solutions to pensions queries and pensions consultative advice; keeping abreast of technical and legislative developments within the pensions industry
  • Overseeing the project management of annual and ad-hoc projects such as renewals, benefit statements, pension increases, trustees' reports and accounts. Ensuring projects are fully monitored and completed in line with customer and legislation requirements
  • Involvement in the scrutinising of client work of other less experienced pensions administration team members. Signing out of ad-hoc and standard letters in response to customer queries
  • Taking responsibility for all aspects of admin billing, in conjunction with Admin Principal and Client Manager. Ensuring all recorded admin time is billed or accrued by the monthly deadline, all chargeable work is correctly recorded on VO and billed as soon as possible, and all bills are issued and payment received on time
  • Disseminating information to team members on service delivery objectives and targets for assigned client portfolio. Presenting of technical matters at team meetings
  • Leading non-client activities, conducting internal audits, being alert to potential improvements in pensions administration processes, quality improvement and implementing changes. Ensuring Governance tracking measures (for example central spreadsheets, error logs etc) are updated promptly
  • Assuming responsibility for total workflow management for the designated team, including workload allocation, prioritisation and ensuring delivery in line with client expectations, legal timescales and service level agreements (SLAs). Holding regular workflow meetings with senior team members to manage progress and resolve any issues
  • Identifying team objectives or other necessary changes in line with business needs, and actively implements appropriate course of action
  • Positively contributing to regular management meetings, implementing any recommendations or decisions made in terms of working practices, resourcing, efficiencies and dissemination of communications to more junior staff
  • Formal staff management responsibilities including areas such as; conducting appraisals, setting individual and team objectives, handling HR, performance management issues and recruitment related activities as and where required
  • Formal responsibilities for mentoring, training, coaching and developing of pensions administration team members. Ensuring adherence to company policies and working procedures
  • Forging strong working relationships with other departments/teams both internal and external to the Company in order to provide a total service to our clients. e.g. Pensions Accounts, Payroll, Administration and Business Support and ITM (3rd party IT software provider)
  • Ensuring the accurate updating of Virtual Office for both chargeable and non-chargeable activities, enabling team and yourself to meet required utilisation and recovery targets, and providing encouragement to team to meet targets and objectives. Reporting to senior management by exception.

Due to the changing nature of the business, the job holder may from time to time be required to undertake other activities of a similar nature that fall within their capabilities.


This section describes the experience, education and skills necessary for the role (at the lowest level that is necessary for full and effective performance).

Knowledge & experience

  • Able to demonstrate an expert knowledge of pensions administration activities and apply this knowledge to any scheme
  • Previous pensions administration experience of Defined Benefit and Defined Contribution schemes (depending on the role, experience of DB/DC may differ subject to team requirements) including leavers, retirements, deaths, transfers, monthly processing and investment, benefit statements, renewals and pension increases. This role is likely to appeal to individuals with c. 6-7 years + experience although not exclusive as all applications will be considered on an individual basis
  • Thorough knowledge of pensions legislation framework and demonstrable ability to remain informed of changes to the framework
  • Previous supervisory, leadership and management experience including performance monitoring, appraisals, recruitment etc
  • Third party pensions administration experience preferred, although strong all round experience within an in-house pensions department, which is not purely process driven will be considered
  • Previous presentational experience is desirable to assist with client pitches, trustee meetings and account development activities
  • Able to demonstrate a numerical aptitude evidenced by work related experience or academic achievements as listed below
  • Previous project management experience would be required to perform pension administration project based work
  • IT proficient, in particular Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook & PowerPoint.

Training, education & qualification

  • Educated to a minimum of A Level or Degree or equivalent standard
  • Ideally a minimum of three C grades or above at A Level or equivalent qualification
  • Strong Maths and English GCSE or equivalent qualification - minimum grade B
  • Significant progression with/or have completed a relevant pensions qualification e.g. CPC/QPA/DPC/RPC/APMI (applicants deemed ‘qualified by experience' would be considered).

Skills, abilities & personal qualities

In addition to the necessary experience, qualifications and academic achievements, the incumbent should be able to demonstrate the following key attributes:

  • Positive personal impact qualities such as leadership, influencing, credibility and empathy
  • Effective management skills including awareness of management processes and motivation of staff. Supports, motivates and coaches colleagues and shares knowledge to the benefit of the team and wider Company
  • Excellent interpersonal abilities, able to forge strong working relationships with colleagues and clients
  • A client focused approach, able to develop trusting and credible partnerships with clients both face to face and via the telephone
  • Continues to seek ways of innovating and improving quality, service delivery and efficiencies in processes and procedures
  • A high degree of professional integrity
  • Self-motivated and enthusiastic approach to work, in particular taking responsibility for personal and technical continuous professional development. Excellent organisational and planning skills, both of self and other team members. Capable of anticipating, resolving and owning problems, identifying solutions to management as and when required
  • An ability to manage conflicting demands on ones time and able to work to tight deadlines in order to meet client and legal obligations. Competent at delegating to ensure best use of resources
  • Well developed analytical and problem solving skills
  • Sound decision making skills, safeguarding the interests of both client and Company
  • Thinking beyond the immediate team when considering tasks and action as to potential impacts
  • Well-developed commercial and business awareness, coupled with excellent negotiation skills.

Preferred criteria

(Qualities that would be desirable for candidates to possess, but are not deemed critical in performing the role at entry level, but would be anticipated as the incumbent develops within the role).

  • Marketing and new business activities
  • Developing business contacts/relationships
  • Experienced in writing tender documentation and contracts.

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