Our Investment Options

Find out more about Standard Life's investment philosophy and why our flexible options might be right for your workforce.

  • Funds and Investments

Our investment approach

Where your employees’ pensions are invested is very important. It has a big impact on how much they’ll have in their pot when they retire and how long this will last.
But understanding where best to invest can be one of the hardest choices for employees. You too have some difficult decisions to make. You need an appropriate default investment option for employees who don’t want to choose their own investments. And you need choice for those who do.

Your investment checklist

Here are some things to think about:

  • Does the default meet the retirement goals and attitude to risk of most of your employees?
  • Does it give their money the chance to benefit from good performance over the long term?
  • Does it manage risk to give them the confidence to stay invested?
  • Can it be easily changed? For example, if there are changes in legislation or regulations, or if your employees’ needs change
  • Are there other choices for employees who don’t want to stay in the default?

How can we help?

We aim to

  • make it easy for you to choose an appropriate default that goes beyond regulations and legislation
  • offer simple, value-for-money investment options that not only give employees choice, but also a good chance of meeting their retirement income goals
  • give employees clear, simple information to help them make the right choices
  • give employees the confidence not only to stay invested but also to save more

We also support you and your employees at every stage. Not only can our flexible investment options evolve to reflect changes in legislation and employee needs. We make sure they never take any more or less risk than they should, and that they continue to deliver their expected outcomes – what we call ‘investment governance’.

And we keep your employees informed about how their investments are doing, with a yearly statement.

Active management

We believe in active fund management, where our experts look for opportunities for funds to perform better than a particular market, benchmark or other similar funds. This is different to passive funds, which aim to match a market or benchmark.

Nobody can ever promise that investments will always go up in value, and there’s always a risk that they may be worth less than what was put in. But our experts are always working to make the most of investment opportunities for your employees - to try and increase returns and to minimise losses.

Choosing a default investment option

You can have as little involvement or as much involvement as you want.

Don't want any involvement?

Our default investment option (also called the low-involvement option) is the Active Plus III Universal Strategic Lifestyle Profile (SLP).

It’s one of our flexible investment options that we call strategic lifestyle profiles’ or SLPs and is designed to make it easy for employees to save for retirement. It’s also designed so they can keep their options open about how they take their money when they retire – they’re not tied to one single option, such as buying an annuity.

Want to choose?

If you want a default that meets the specific needs of your workforce, we have more SLPs for you to choose from. You can choose an SLP that has a different:

  • risk level - if you believe your employees are comfortable taking more or less risk
  • retirement goal – including annuity purchase, drawdown and a lump sum
  • investment style – to suit your preference or budget

Or all three.

Find out more about choosing an appropriate default and our range of SLPs below and in our guide to workplace pensions investments with Standard Life.

Keeping you informed

Part of our commitment to giving you peace of mind is providing regular information on how your employees' investments are doing:

Our SLPs – simple, flexible investment choices

Our SLPs give you the chance to choose a default that meets your employees’ specific needs. It also gives employees additional choice if they want it.

Good outcomes as standard

You’ll want to give your employees the best possible chance of their pension meeting their retirement goals.

So do we.

Our SLPs:

  • Are simple
  • Are future-proofed
  • Manage risk
  • Include a diverse range of high-quality investments
  • Are regularly reviewed and monitored

Choices for all

image showing the different investment choices

* Risk level I Universal and Active Retirement glidepaths aren’t available as these would take more risk than appropriate for employees with a very low tolerance to investment risk.

Find out more about our SLPs in our guide to workplace pensions investments with Standard Life.

Other options

One size doesn’t fit all when it comes to investments. Some employees may be more knowledgeable about investments and want to build their own pension investment portfolios. And some workforces have different requirements. So we offer choice beyond our defaults and SLPs.

Full fund range

Employees with a good understanding about investments can choose from hundreds of funds from leading fund management groups. These cover different asset classes, regions and investment styles.

See our full range.

All these funds are regularly reviewed as part of our investment governance processes.

Employer-designed investments

Looking for investment options that meet specific requirements? If your scheme meets certain criteria, we can help:

Customised default options
Design a default tailored to your employees’ needs.

Blended funds
Blend together two or more funds from our fund range to create a single fund.

Selected fund range
Create a shortlist of funds if you feel employees might be overwhelmed by too much choice.

Speak to your financial adviser or call us for more information about employer-designed investments.