What the College is doing
The College is pleased that early indications from the USS Trustee suggest a potential improvement in the funding position when compared with the 2020 valuation. We will continue to strongly advocate for our staff to ensure fairness, affordability and sustainability for their pension scheme.
Long-term scheme reform
Although initial suggestions for the 2023 valuation are positive, drawing upon the experience of prior valuations, it clear that USS needs a more sustainable, predictable footing in the long-term. We will continue to urge all parties to explore the feasibility of alternative approaches that will give the necessary long-term stability and viability to the USS scheme, including an exploration of conditional indexation, or alternative scheme designs, to make it possible for USS to continue as a collective, mutual, multi-employer scheme with an ability to invest for the long term in growth-seeking assets.
Our position is informed by the feedback provided by the USS Staff Working Group, as well as through surveys and discussions with members. USS must also be considered within the context of our broader Total Remuneration Package.
The USS pension scheme needs a more sustainable footing
Although the 2023 valuation may show that the scheme is in a stronger position than in 2020, there is a need for long-term scheme reform. This includes the aforementioned governance review, as well as the creation of a working party to explore the feasibility and promise of alternative approaches that will provide long-term stability and viability.
Maintaining a hybrid scheme is key
We will continue to strongly argue for both a Defined Benefit and Defined Contribution component. We also believe this should include a lower cost, more flexible alternative as part of USS to give members a more attractive, affordable, and sustainable option.