Professional pension services
Growth in the number of pension decisions came to a halt in 2012, and the number of pension decisions by Varma began to decline. A total of 24,180 new pension decisions were made in 2012, which is 9.3 per cent less than in the previous year. EUR 4.5 billion in pensions were paid to 331,400 recipients.
The number of old-age pensions somewhat decreased from 2011. The current level results from the fact that the number of employees and self-employed persons who have reached the age limit of 63 for receiving old-age pension has remained fairly constant among Varma's customers.
Eight per cent of the old-age pension decisions were granted based on working while collecting pension, which indicates that working while on a pension has become more common. Those insured by Varma retire on average at the age of 63.5.
Following a slight increase in 2011, the amount of disability pension decisions again headed into a clear decline of 8.9 per cent. The rejection rate for new disability pension applications by earnings-related pension companies has been on the rise in recent years. Surveys by the Finnish Centre for Pensions have not revealed any single reason for this. Varma's rejection rate is in line with the general development in the sector. In 2012, Varma rejected 29.6 per cent of new disability pension applications.
The proportion of partial disability pensions of all disability pensions has continued to rise, with the number of partial disability pension applications up by 1.5 per cent in 2012. Partial disability pension promotes continuing in working life: According to 2011 data, some 80.4 per cent of Varma's partial disability pension recipients (TyEL insurance) did part-time work.
Pensions paid totalled EUR 4.5 billion in 2012, i.e. 7 per cent more than in the previous year. The increase is due to the constant rise in the number of pension recipients, which is a consequence of the change in the population's age structure and longer life expectancy. The euro amount of pensions granted also increased.
Flexible online services for handling pensions
We develop our extensive online services based on customer needs. We provide services for those still in working life, and for pension applicants and pension recipients alike. In 2012, as the first pension company in Finland, we introduced online follow-up on pension and rehabilitation applications for our customers.
Increasing numbers of our customers are actively using the online services. In 2012, the use of online services for private customers increased 77 per cent. The most popular service is the application tracking, which was used by 18,540 pension applicants last year. Varma received 4,910 electronic pension applications in 2012, which accounts for 22.1 per cent of all new applications. The number of online pension estimates totalled 100,590, which equals as much as 87 per cent of all estimates. Our constantly improving online services help our customers take care of their business with us faster and more easily.
Using our new SMS service, we notify the customer when we have received their pension application. We also send text messages to remind our customers to check their pension record.
In 2012, we sent our customers for the first time pension records showing their complete earnings-related pension cover. In future, pension record will be sent by post once every three years. Our customers are increasingly opting for an electronic pension record, which can be checked at any time during the year.