Payments into your pension are known as contributions.
When your employer enrols you into a workplace pension with us, you will normally contribute a percentage of your salary to your pension. You will see this pension contribution reflected on your payslip. You can adjust the size of this percentage.
Changing your regular contributions
To change how much you contribute to your pension, sign in to your account and click on Manage contributions at the bottom of the dashboard. Or click on the Contributions tab, scroll down to the bottom and select Update.
Use the slider to change your contribution percentage. Click the Update button at the bottom of the page to save your changes. The changes will be reflected from your next pay period.
Contributions from your employer
Your employer will pay into your workplace pension when you do.
This contribution is paid directly from your employer into your pension. You can check what contributions your employer has made in the Contributions tab of your account.
You and your employer need to contribute a total of at least 8% of your salary to your pension.
If your employer contributes 3% (the minimum level currently required of them by law), your minimum contribution will be 5%, to make 8% in total.
If your employer matches your contributions to 4% or more, your minimum contribution will need to be 4%, totalling 8% when matched by your employer.
You can make a one-off contribution to your pension whenever your financial circumstances allow - making it a helpful way to boost your pension pot. This kind of extra one-off contribution is known as an additional voluntary contribution (AVC).
You can currently only make an AVC through your employer. Speak to your payroll department and they’ll take it out of your salary and let us know. You’ll see the contribution appear in your pot within 6 weeks of us receiving their payroll data.
Alternatively, you could consider making a one-off contribution payment directly from your personal bank account. If this is of interest you should contact the Smart Pension team by email at smrt.pe/member-contact or by calling us on 0333 666 2626 to discuss the process you’ll need to follow.
If you want to find out more about one-off contributions you should take a look at our “Boost your pension savings by making a one-off pension contribution” article to learn more about the factors to take into account and the processes to follow.
There is a limit to the total amount that you can contribute to your pension each tax year, this is known as the annual allowance. For the tax year 2021/22 the annual allowance is £40,000 across all of your pension arrangements. This covers all your contributions, your employer’s contributions, and any tax relief you may get. Once you go over this allowance, you will incur a tax charge, known as the annual allowance charge.
If you earn over £200,000 a year, or if you've already started to access any of your pension savings, your annual allowance may be different. If you'd like more information, we recommend talking with a financial adviser.