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The Trustee toolkit

Increase your trustee knowledge and understanding using our Trustee toolkit.

Trustee toolkit online learning

We provide a free online learning programme called the Trustee toolkit which you should complete, unless you arrange the equivalent learning. You must login or sign up to use the Trustee toolkit.

Go to the Trustee toolkit 

Toolkit programme

The programme is split into separate modules designed to enable you to dip in and out of the content, and learn at your own pace. The essential learning is tailored to your own scheme type and size, and there are downloadable resources meaning that you can study offline. There are also optional additional learning modules to expand your knowledge and understanding.

Each module contains:

  • an elearning module split into scenarios and tutorials
  • an assessment to prove you have learned what you need
  • other activities such as a 'check your scheme' worksheet, to help you apply the learning to your own scheme, and case examples which bring the learning to life

The elearning module follows a fictional trustee board through various scenarios as they make decisions regarding the day-to-day running of their scheme. As you work through the scenarios you have the opportunity to learn more about the topic at hand by completing a technical tutorial. You can also just work through the tutorials if you prefer.

Toolkit modules

The core modules cover each of the items listed in our trustee knowledge and understanding guidance.

You only need to pass the modules that are relevant for your size and type of scheme to complete the essential learning section of your development record and you can study whenever it suits you.

 Module What the module covers:  Study time in hours  Schemes the module is relevant to 
Introducing pension schemes Occupational pensions and how they are run 1 All schemes
The trustee's role
What it's like to become a trustee, attending board meetings, duties, powers and protections
1 hr 15 mins
All schemes
Running a scheme
Risk management, maintaining member data and working with advisers and service providers
1 hr 15 mins
All schemes
Pensions law
Pensions related legislation, The Pensions Regulator, the tax treatment of pensions, state pensions and member dispute procedures
1 hr 15 mins
All schemes
An introduction to investment
Investing in a pension scheme, types of assets, risk, reward, economic cycles, active and passive management, diversification and managing investments
2 hrs 15 mins
All schemes
How a DB scheme works
Benefits accrual and calculation, the employer covenant and recognising when an employer's ability to meet pension liabilities may be at risk
DB only, DB with AVC and Hybrid
Funding your DB scheme
Various assumptions used to measure the funding position of a scheme and the different measures used to determine the funding level of schemes
DB only, DB with AVC and Hybrid
DB recovery plans, contributions and funding principles
Setting contributions and producing a recovery plan and statement of funding principles
DB only, DB with AVC and Hybrid
How a DC scheme works (2014)
Risks to good member outcomes, contributions, transactions, value for money and charges, retirement decisions and member communications
1 hr 45 mins
DC only, DB with AVC and Hybrid
Investment in a DC scheme
Setting the investment strategy, selecting a default investment strategy and alternative options for members, charges and managing performance
1 hr 15 mins
DC only, DB with AVC and Hybrid
Investment in a DB scheme
Reviewing the investment strategy, tools to help trustees such as scenario analysis, projection modelling and stochastic modelling and example changes trustees make to the asset allocation.
DB only, DB with AVC and Hybrid 

Proving your achievements

The Trustee toolkit enables trustees to print or save a development record which proves their achievements and acts as a proof of their progress through the toolkit. In February 2014 this replaced the ‘certificate of successful completion’ described in the Trustee knowledge and understanding code of practice.

Each module also features an online assessment and for each one you pass your development record will be updated with your score. The development record can be downloaded at any time and as new modules are added you will be able to pass these and add them to your record too.

Assessing your learning needs

The Trustee toolkit has the following range of resources to help you review your knowledge and understanding, the tasks you need to do and the skills you need to develop:

  • quick guide to personal development
  • assess your learning needs
  • study planner
  • learning log

To view the resources go to ongoing learning and development