Norfolk County Council Pension Fund, Norwich, England, and a group of six other local government pension schemes is searching for providers of actuarial services, benefits consulting, governance consulting and specialist project consulting to join its multiprovider panel, said Nigel Keogh, national LGPS frameworks operations and development manager for the council.
The panel is a renewal of the existing actuarial and benefits consulting framework launched in 2012, which is due to expire in June. The searches are for actuarial services and benefits consulting contracts initially awarded in 2012 but are due to expire in June. “However, we have taken the opportunity to expand the scope of the framework to cover governance consultancy services, which is a growing area following the changes in public-sector pension governance that have taken place in the last few years,” Mr. Keogh said in an e-mail.
The search is split into four parts: actuarial services; benefits consulting services, which includes providing pension fund risk management and implementation services, advice on compliance with regulatory requirements, and policy developments; governance consulting services, covering advice and guidance on pension fund governance, and risk management relating to governance and fund analysis; and a consultant to support special projects. Mr. Keogh said this is wide ranging, covering everything from projects related to LGPS pooling, to regulatory compliance reviews. He said executives are looking for providers with “the relevant skills and experience that can undertake a wide range of pensions project-based work.”
The current providers of actuarial services are Aon Hewitt, Barnett Waddingham, Hymans Robertson and Mercer; current benefit consultants are Aon, Barnett, Hymans, KPMG, Mercer and PricewaterhouseCoopers. All incumbents are invited to rebid.
As well as Norfolk, which has £2.9 billion ($4.1 billion) of assets, the search is being conducted on behalf of Wolverhampton City Council, Wolverhampton, England; London Borough of Hackney; Environment Agency, Bristol, England; Lincolnshire County Council Pension Fund, Lincoln, England; Cumbria County Council, Carlisle, England; and Tower Hamlets Council, London.
Contracts will last for four years. However, a filing with European procurement website Tenders Electronic Daily said that since LGPS regulations require an actuarial valuation of assets and liabilities every three years, contracts might be awarded for up to seven years for cost and continuity.
Further details are available on the TED website. Proposals are due April 12. The pension fund hopes to make a selection by the end of May.