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Governance of knowledge and understanding


Early draft of the code of practice

This code is not in force yet. It is an early version for the new code of practice consultation.

To give us feedback on issues such as the design, usability and navigation of this code, email us at

You can also read more information about the consultation.

Published: 17 March 2021

This module applies to schemes subject to the requirement to maintain an effective system of governance under the Pensions Act 2004, section 249A.

It is important that the governing body as a whole can demonstrate they jointly possess the skills, knowledge and experienceGO1 to run the scheme effectively.

The governing body should:

  • have a balance of skills and experience spread throughout the board and be able to demonstrate this
  • be able to apply its knowledge to governing the scheme
  • have sufficient skills to judge and question advice or services provided by a third party
  • maintain a plan for the ongoing maintenance and development of the governing body’s knowledge. See Building and maintaining knowledge.
  • be able to identify and address skills gaps
  • have sufficient understanding of industry good practice and standards to assess the performance of the scheme and its service providers. See Managing advisers and service providers.
  • keep records of the learning activities of individual members and the body as a whole
  • be able to demonstrate steps it has taken to comply with the law
  • have and maintain training and development plans to ensure that its collective knowledge and understanding is kept relevant and up to date. See Building and maintaining knowledge.

Legal references

GO1Sections 247-248 Pensions Act 2004