Smart Pension hires Head of Financial Services and appoints new Chair Of Trustees

Claire Altman is named as the new Head of Financial Services whilst Andy Cheseldine takes over as Independent Chair of Trustees.

Governance pioneer and independent trustee Claire Altman has been appointed into the new role of head of financial services by fast-growth workplace pension provider Smart Pension, effective from today.

Claire, who has been chair of trustees at the high tech auto enrolment platform since its launch in May 2015, will move over into the newly-created full-time position, which will see her head up a department handling industry liaison, policy, strategy and governance as the firm experiences exponential growth.

Andy Cheseldine, one of the early supporters of auto enrolment and architects of auto enrolment services, will take over her role as independent chair of trustees. The pensions, regulatory expert and former adviser to employers and providers including NEST is a financial services 'titan' with more than 35 years of experience in consulting on defined benefit and defined contributions arrangements. Andy is a professional trustee with Capital Cranfield.

Andrew Evans, co-founder and CEO of Smart Pension said:

"We're more than excited to bring Claire into the senior team as head of financial services. Claire is an outstanding professional who understands the fintech world Smart Pension inhabits and her strategic insight will be invaluable as we continue to grow apace.

"Andy's deep knowledge and expertise are already renowned in the pensions industry. We're delighted to have him on board as we steer our ship through the next phase of expansion."

Claire, a former partner in city law firm Sacker & Partners, said:

"Smart Pension's approach is very entrepreneurial. It's primarily a fintech firm and has a truly innovative outlook meaning that there is no room for traditional practices if these are not efficient.

"My appointment and that of Andy, is part of that impressive forward-thinking - and I'm excited to be going on Smart Pension's journey as part of the team."

As part of her work as an independent trustee, Claire was on the board of the Association of Professional Pension Trustees and has been at the forefront of driving forward initiatives to raise standards amongst trustees.

Andy is an award-winning former partner at financial services firm Lane Clark & Peacock and before that a senior consultant at human resources firm Aon Hewitt and Sedgewick Noble Lowndes. He was included in the Top 50 People in Pensions Awards in 2015 and the Top 25 most influential investment consultants in the last five years.

He has also served on the Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association Defined Contributions Council for more than 13 years.

Andy said:

"I'm very excited to join Smart Pension as it powers on to its next stage of relentless expansion. Smart Pension is a really exciting company that is knocking the opposition out of the water with its technology. There is plenty of opportunity in this space and Smart Pension is in the perfect position to make the most of it."

Smart Pension now sees a business join every seven minutes and welcomes 1,000 new members a day as auto enrolment reaches its final phase of roll out. It now takes care of workplace pensions for over 60,000 firms and 300,000 members.

The firm's award-winning highly automated platform harnesses time-saving applications to allow fast, seamless auto enrolment with a sign-up and onboarding process that takes just a few minutes from start to finish. It is free to employers and has an AMC-only charging structure for members that is transparent with no upfront or hidden costs.

It is MAF-accredited. In June it was named as Fintech Innovation of the Year and overall winner in the Digital Leaders 100 Awards.

It has an average score of 4.4 out of 5 in Google reviews from its customers.