[Awards Q&A] 2020 Best MPF Scheme - Fidelity Retirement Master Trust

To help our readers better observe what makes a winner, we asked the winning teams to shed lights on some major changes they made that helped facilitate a better investor experience for scheme membersover the course of 2019, role of fees, etc. 

Morningstar 06 April, 2020 | 8:52
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2020 Mstaraward

2020 Best MPF Scheme - Fidelity Retirement Master Trust

Q1) Can you highlight any changes that helped facilitate a better investor experience for scheme members in 2019?

In 2019, the Fidelity Hong Kong Workplace Investing Business have continued to innovate, improve and enhance our employers and members’ experience.  This includes the phase 2 launch of our MPF Smart Onboarding platform, a brand-new Fidelity SmartRetire mobile app (iOS and Android) along with campaigns focusing on member communication.

With the phase 2 launch of our MPF Smart Onboarding platform in the summer of 2019, e-signature and straight-through enrolment processing have been enabled, allowing our members to experience a simplified, user-friendly, and modern way to save for their retirement. We also introduced a dedicated HR portal, allowing our employer clients a much easier way to manage the enrolment process for new joiners. 

The brand-new Fidelity SmartRetire mobile app (iOS and Android) has also been designed with our members in mind - the content layout and functionalities are simple and easy to understand. The app integrates seamlessly with the MPF Smart Onboarding tool - once a member has successfully enrolled, they can begin to manage their accounts solely through their mobile devices. This ensures our members’ MPF accounts are easily accessible, and the user-friendly nature of the app makes them more likely to be engaged throughout their retirement journey.

On member communication, support and education, we have worked collaboratively with our WI colleagues around the world in both Fidelity and FMR to develop and roll out our Fidelity Retirement Savings Guidelines. This useful tool is tailored specifically to Hong Kong, allowing our members to keep track of where they are in terms of retirement goals, through a simple to understand set of milestones which they can benchmark themselves against. What’s more, in September we launched a MPF digital campaign comprising a series of social videos, interactive games, and content posts in Fidelity Facebook with an aim to educate the public about the importance of proactive MPF management. We state the fact that everyone can be a self-taught MPF master to take charge of their MPF with ease by simply making good use of online platform and digital services provided by Fidelity. At the same time, our market outlook and investment insights videos and newsletters help our members keep up to date with the ever-changing market environment. 

The team is continuously working on a number of new and exciting tools and applications for our clients.  Most recently, following the introduction of the Tax-Deductible Voluntary Contribution (TVC) in 2019, we have introduced eTVC application through our Fidelity SmartRetire app. Through the use of face recognition, liveness detection and identity verification technology, our members can apply and start saving in a more tax efficient way - all through their mobile devices.

Q2) What are some of your more popular MPFs? Why do you think that is?

The Fidelity MPF scheme offers a full array of investment choices for our members and as such it really depends on individual retirement objectives and appetite towards taking risk.  Having said that, mixed asset funds tend to be a popular choice amongst our members, as it is a relatively simple to understand investment concept. The multi-asset approach offers globally diversified (with a Hong Kong bias) strategies which have also proved to be effective at delivering long term performance that reflect their respective risk and return profiles.  Hong Kong equity fund is also a popular fund choice amongst our members in general as there is a natural home-bias towards investing into a market which they are familiar with.

Q3) Can you comment on how the schemes underlying investment options are put together? How do you determine the appropriate product types (e.g. equities, fixed income, target-date) for the scheme and subsequently, the most suitable investment strategy/mandate for each type of product(s)? If the scheme employs external managers, please briefly comment on your manager selection process.

At Fidelity, we are constantly reviewing our MPF scheme to ensuring an appropriate product mix is in place to suit our members’ attitude towards risk and return objective.  In light of this, the process for implementing the addition and/or removal of fund choices involve various parties and functional groups within Fidelity and can be broadly broken down into three main stages: Market assessment, Governance and Execution.  The main objective for adopting this process is to ensure we are not arbitrarily adding (or removing) funds and that every fund under consideration is done within a well thought out framework and well endorsed by various levels of management.  More importantly for the MPF market, there is an emphasis on the ability of the fund to delivering consistent long-term returns as this is aligned with the typical time horizon nature of pension investing.

Q4) What is the role of fees when you consider the overall appeal of your offering? With an increasingly cost-competitive landscape, how do your fees compare with your peers? Are there any initiatives to reduce fees?

The Fidelity MPF scheme is a good-value offering with the average scheme FER being lower versus the industry average.  We regularly review our existing fees with an aim to providing our members with a MPF scheme that offers attractive pricing as well as delivering strong performance and member services. 

With the introduction of the Default Investment Strategy (DIS), members can ensure they have access to a globally diversified low-cost option that automatically de-risks when they are approaching retirement age. 

Q5) What is the key to running a consistently high-performing MPF scheme?

At Fidelity, our clients and their needs are our priority, and we constantly strive to improve their experience with us.  Their valuable feedback allows us to plan for the future and as such, we run various NPS surveys to both our employer as well as our member clients periodically to ensure what we are doing is aligned with our clients’ needs.

Not only do we simply want to be the best MPF service provider, but we want to be the preferred retirement partner with whom our clients can trust to deliver relevant tools to help them plan for a brighter retirement future.

View all 2020 Morningstar Fund Awards Hong Kong articles here.

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