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The Ethics of Pensions: Caring About Employee Futures

March 01, 2019

A recent CIBC poll suggests that 32 per cent of Canadians between 45 and 64 have nothing saved for retirement, and 53 per cent of Canadians say they don’t actually know if they are saving enough at all.

Here’s why.

With CPP/QPP, the average elderly person will receive just over $13,000 per year in benefits. Even at such a low rate of return on the average Canadian’s retirement contributions, many still think the current federal government’s plan cannot sustain itself. With fewer younger people contributing to the fund, the amount of subsidies available to the elderly in their retirement decreases.

But there’s more to it than that.

Company pensions are changing, too. The number of defined benefit plans are decreasing, and fewer companies are offering pension plans to their employees overall. Many companies are also redefining roles as temporary or part-time so that pensions are not in the benefit mix at all.

This isn’t necessarily a boon to business.

We can cut corners on pensions, but that comes with a cost. Plans that are more risky over the long term for workers can result in decreased motivation and increased strain, leading to stressed out employees with low productivity.

At Marris + Miller, we know that companies and organizations can deliver the right mix of pension benefits to employees so that they are happy, healthy, and prepared for their retirement. Pension management is a key component of a company’s human resource policies.

In our new paper on the social context of pensions in 2019, we talk about why the pension environment is changing, and what you may be able to do about it. Companies looking to create a viable pension plan need to integrate new knowledge and information about external economic shifts over time so that the pension is not negatively affected over the long term, and so that everyone thrives.

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