Growing impact of digital media on financial decisions

6 April 2018


A cross-generational survey conducted by online pension administrator BeFrank among generations X, Y and Z in the Netherlands reveals that young people are underinformed about their retirement pension. Despite longstanding efforts by the Dutch government to educate and activate future pensioners when it comes to their retirement and old-age benefits, data shows that the 18-37 age cohort (roughly Generations Y and Z) continue to trail their older counterparts by some distance.

The survey found that a large proportion of young people are unable to name their pension administrator: only 13% knew the answer to this question, compared with nearly 60% of the 37-57 demographic (roughly Generation X). In addition to being unaware of who administers their retirement pension, the younger Dutch generations are ignorant of how their pension scheme works and how much retirement credit they have earned to date. When asked to give an estimate, the majority of younger respondents merely stated they believed they would receive ‘just enough’ or ‘more than sufficient’ in future retirement benefits.

Pension information: changing with the times
Since the younger generations find the topic of their retirement pension less than riveting, it is all the more important that they receive information through communication media popular among their demographic. The survey shows that modern communication media (including WhatsApp, chatbots and online portals) are vital when it comes to implementing changes to pensions and for contacting pension administrators with questions. Jan Hein Rhebergen, BeFrank’s Commercial Director: ‘Our mission is to make information about pensions and retirement as clear-cut as possible. We tailor our communications to people’s preferred communication media when making financial decisions. We are an online-only bank, and any changes to people’s pensions can easily be communicated through our app. We also use WhatsApp and a chatbot for fielding customer questions.’

Online convenience ensures higher customer satisfaction
Rhebergen perceives a clear correlation between pension awareness and online services: ‘We have a login rate of around 60%, and while that may not seem all that impressive, it’s actually pretty high in the pensions market. We have found that our members give higher customer satisfaction scores once they get to experience the convenience of online communication and information. We’re in the process of developing an all-new online environment with several new features, including an income planner, which gives you a comprehensive picture of your financial future. So the scope of our services is much wider than pensions and retirement alone.’

About the survey
Panelwizard conducted a survey in February 2018, commissioned by BeFrank, of more than 1,000 working people in the Netherlands aged 18 and older.

About BeFrank
BeFrank has been active in the group pensions market since 2011 and is the first premium pension institution (PPI) in the Netherlands. BeFrank offers a clear pension, straightforward communication and an online service at low cost. BeFrank is part of NN Group.

For more information contact Isabelle van Ast. E-mail:, Tel: +31 (0)20 5621118.