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50 Best Companies to Watch 2021

Lisa Lyon, Founder and CEO of mypensionID, Speaks to The Silicon Review: ‘Our Aim is to be the Number One Verification App in the Industry’

"We remove barriers such as the need for intensive form-filling of documents and do not require any postage, so a time-saving, environmentally friendly solution for our customers, and their end clients, wherever they may be in the world."

While every pension agency has its unique differences, a common purpose unites them—to maintain the trust fund’s financial security and provide exceptional service to external stakeholders. By updating the technology used to administer pension benefits, pension agencies can ensure financial security while simultaneously achieving customer service excellence.

mypensionID is one such firm that understands the challenges of keeping your pension members’ data up-to-date. Utilising innovative, proven mobile technology and biometrics, mypensionID enables members to communicate securely with their pension service providers. The platform confirms and authenticates personal identity against official validated documents within minutes, globally.

The company was founded in 2019 and is headquartered in Chichester, West Sussex.

In Conversation with Lisa Lyon, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of mypensionID

Q. What inspired you to start mypensionID? Brief us about the journey so far.

I have been leading Target Professional Services for over 20 years now. Target is a market-leading data verification specialist. It works globally with pensions, savings and investment service providers, and understands accurate data is essential for every stage of member lifecycle. Good member data and effective communication are essential for financial services to function efficiently, process financial transactions promptly, provide accurate valuations and much more.

Target wanted to deliver an innovative solution to improve international member verification process and to generally increase member engagement through simple and secure identification.

Smart phones form such a major part of people’s lives, this was the natural medium to employ the technology. The pensions and savings industry still rely heavily on paper communication and web-based portals which offer limited ability to securely identify members.

Target developed mypensionID, a ground-breaking mobile app, to allow members to verify their identity and confirm or update their details from their own home anywhere in the world, simply and securely, all within minutes.

We identified a huge area for fraud within our sector, overseas payments, and a need to change the way people were connected to their pensions. Historically, pension providers will engage with a company to locate members of a scheme they may have left decades ago. If the data is poor and old, the communication success rate is often very poor, there needed to be an easier and more secure way for people to not only find their pensions but to keep connected to all their pensions and savings in one place.

The biometric technology along with other checks ensures we have the right member thus dramatically reducing the opportunity for fraud, particularly overseas. The two combined together provide a very powerful app for both the pension provider and the pension member.

Delineate a short overview of the services your company offers.

mypensionID is a native application that provides leading digital identification and verification technology, specifically designed for the pensions and savings industry. Utilising innovative, proven mobile technology and biometrics, the platform enables members to communicate securely with their financial service providers. The app securely and simply confirms and authenticates personal identity against official ID documents from anywhere in the world.

Importantly, mypensionID incorporates cutting-edge biometrics to securely verify a member selfie, both a static version and one requiring them to blink to confirm they are alive, against official documents. The technology also validates thousands of documents from 160 countries, providing further security. The platform can also be used to facilitate entry to web-based portals for simple and biometrically secure member access— allowing innovative online automation of processes.

Last but not least, mypensionID will connect people with lost pensions and keep them connected.

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Q. Could you describe your typical management style and the type of employee that works well with you?

mypensionID management lead by example to inspire and innovate the wider team. Our company core values of respect, innovation, integrity & passion are embedded in everything we do, and we encourage these for all employees. Our vision is ‘Everyone connected to their pensions and savings—securely, confidently, globally’. We ensure our entire team share this vision and relate it to all aspects of their role while embracing our core values. Curious employees are sought to challenge our processes and outcomes to constantly improve our services for our clients. We encourage our team to engage with our clients to understand their problems and embrace technology to develop solutions while challenging existing protocol to improve experiences through innovation.

Q. What is your company’s policy on providing seminars, workshops, and training so the employees can keep up on their skills or acquire new skills?

mypensionID employees have an effective voice in the running of the business and a stake in the success, so we actively promote additional training opportunities. Employees are encouraged to learn new skills and access training which the company will support as well as cross training the team within the business to understand all aspects of our services.

We, as a company, encourage staff to attend industry seminars on identity, savings, and pensions wherever possible to learn more about the industry we serve. Also, our staff are active participants on industry body groups such as OIX (Open Identity Exchange), TISA (The Investing & Saving Alliance), PLSA (Pensions & Lifetime Savings Association) and Pensions Management Institute, which all provide additional workshops for our employees to develop their knowledge of the market.

Q. Using innovative and proven mobile technology and biometrics, mypensionID enables you to communicate with your pension provider utilising a combination of facial and movement recognition technology. How effectively does technology play a role here? Describe briefly.

Technology is an integral part of our proposition and on-going development. The pensions and savings industry has historically been slow to adopt this accepted technology that individuals of all ages are comfortable using. mypensionID provides biometric technology to deliver an accurate and GDPR compliant solution using proven technology widely accepted. At its core, it is embedded into the hardware already held by many members. This alone, however, was not enough, so we incorporated other document verifying technology into the back-end of our app to verify an individual against an official photographic ID document securely.

Technology is moving at a lightning pace right now, and as one innovation is adopted, another arrives to enhance the process or replace it entirely. In order to thrive, a company needs to adapt and move with the times continually. This is what we do at mypensionID to challenge our processes and look for technological enhancements wherever possible.

Q. What new endeavors is your company currently undertaking?

As part of our continual desire to adopt new technologies and innovate our products, we are currently implementing NFC (Near Field Communication) functionality into our app to provide the pensions and savings members a simpler user-experience for collecting data from passports, while enhancing the support functionality for end-users via an expanded team and looking at AI and Machine Learning to aid the end-user journey and communication.

Q. About the plans, where do you see your company a couple of years from now?

We aim to fulfill our vision, and understand the challenges of connecting to savings, which can be costly, time-consuming, and frustrating. It is our desire to simplify this process and make it easier to stay connected to the hard-earned money and benefits due. As such, it is our aim to be the number one verification app in the industry.

"We provide a much higher level of security and identity affirmation than these traditional methods, as the biometric verification ensures this is the individual member, thus reducing the opportunity for fraud significantly."