PenOp to accommodate over 70m workers

Determined to accommodate the over 70 million workers that are presently
outside the Contributory Pension Scheme (CPS), the Pension Fund
Operators Association of Nigeria (PenOp) amongst other strategies has
commenced training operators for the enrollment of workers from the
informal, private and public sectors.

PenOp
PenOp

A statement by the Executive Secretary PenOp, Ms Susan Oranye, noted
that executive of the National Pension Commission (PenCom), who were at
the events, trained the operators on key procedures such as, basic
calculation of fund pricing, differences between Programmed Withdrawals
and Annuity, death benefit requirements and new initiatives in the
sector.

She said the training which held in Lagos; Abuja and PortHarcourt,
provided opportunities for the workers to share knowledge and initiate
measures to tackle challenges affecting their operations.

She maintained that the training and other measures adopted by the
association are geared toward making adequate provisions for workers
that are presently covered in the scheme and those that will be
integrated through recent initiatives taken by PenCom and the
association.

Susan Oranye of PenOp
Susan Oranye of PenOp

“We are aware that there are approximately 176 million in this country
and about 70 million people in the workforce and currently we have about
6.4 million in the contributory pension scheme.

“The Pension Fund Operators Association of Nigeria (PenOp) recently
concluded its customers service training that held in PortHarcourt,
Abuja and Lagos and was attended by key staff of all the operators in
these three regions.

“It was extremely exciting and interactive. The focus of the training
was to build the capacity, knowledge base and confidence of the staff,
especially those who are at the front line in the organisation they
work for.

“The pension industry has seen changes, especially in the Pension Reform
Act 2014, which came with changes in procedures, required documentation
and different issues.

“We felt that it was important that all the representatives, staff who
have face to face contacts with customers and the general public on a
daily bases are brought up to date regarding all the changes, processes,
and documentations required. We do not want any of them to offer
sub-standard customers service, hence the need for the training.”

NLC mobilizing with PenOp
NLC mobilizing with PenOp

She said the training was designed to prepare the operators on how to
offer excellent services to their clients.

“The pension industry is still growing and we know that now is the time
to inculcate into the system the need for operators to treat their
clients well, keep them informed and ensure that all their enquiries and
needs are met. That was the the essence of the training.

“To make the training more in-depth, for the first year ever, the
National Pension Commission (PenCom) was invited to attend the trainings
in the three locations. PenCom was there to training the attendees on
how to provide excellent customers service in retirement benefits
administration. This is because, that is the high point of the pension
system – what people get when they retire,” she said.

PenCom
PenCom

Oranye stressed that the knowledge obtained from key procedures such as
basic calculation of fund pricing, differences between Programmed
Withdrawals and Annuity, death benefit requirements and more, will
impact the industry positively, adding that there was robust question
and answer sections, where challenges were raised and discussed in a
spirited environment.

Oranye said the attendees were pleased with benefits they derived from
the training, stressing that the effort goes to show that PenOp is not
resting on its oars.

She said PenOp recognizes the fact that there is a lot of grounds to
cover, and so, it is preparing her people for times such as the opening
of the doors of the the informal sector.

She maintained that prior to when the gates would be opened, the
operators want to be ensure that they are prepared, knowledgeable to
meet whatever enquiry and provide the services that are required.
Chuks Udo Okonta

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