Our principles

We want to transform pensions, savings and financial wellbeing across all generations, around the world.

We do this by blending the financial expertise and tech innovation that our founders, Will and Andrew, brought together in 2014. We create tech-driven financial products, whilst remaining responsible, trustworthy and compliant.

There are eight guiding principles we live by at Smart. They make the organisation a great place to work. They also ensure we're all working in the same way, to produce the best results for our clients and our members.

1

We have a clean sheet of paper

This is a very big competitive advantage which we should use whenever possible. It’s important to always look at things with a fresh perspective, and not just do things a certain way because “that’s the way it’s always been done”. We have an opportunity to disrupt and massively improve the industry. So let’s be creative, innovative and do things differently – savers will be the winners.

2

We work with other amazing businesses and prosper together

We shouldn’t try to reinvent the wheel if we don’t need to. There are lots of businesses which do things well and many useful products that can help us, whether they be APIs, services, workflow tools we can use, or partners we can do innovative things with. As long as the economics make sense, there’s no need to keep things to ourselves. We can often get a bigger slice of the cake by working with other excellent partners – so we all benefit and win.

3

We work in the medium to long-term

It’s not always about quick wins. We prefer to think in a long-term way and take time to do things properly. This is the best way to build real value into a business – for our clients, members, strategic partners, employees and shareholders. Where there is a choice between spending less for short-term value or investing more for long-term value, we nearly always prefer the long-term solution.

4

We execute great ideas and deliver constantly

Great ideas and creativity are very important ingredients of successful, innovative businesses. The right planning, strategy and direction of travel are essential too. But all these things are useless without outstanding execution and delivery. Smart is a business that aims to constantly deliver top quality. It's how we have had our success to date, and how we will continue to succeed.

5

We are compliant and we do things properly

We are a regulated business and the consequences of not being compliant are serious. In the most extreme cases, it could mean the end of the business. Non-compliance is categorically not the Smart way of doing things. So we approach and deliver everything we do to meet the highest levels of regulatory oversight. This is a red line in the organisation – we take it extremely seriously.

6

We favour technological solutions

Occasionally, we’ll have to deploy a blood sweat and tears, manual solution that takes considerable, repeated human effort. But we’ll always reanalyse the task when we can, and use technology to automate or simplify it as much as possible. Most business processes that take time and effort can be done quickly with software – without risk of human error. This frees up our time to work on more interesting challenges and opportunities that add much greater value across the organisation.

7

We’re determined. We’re fighters. And we fight to win.

We get things done and deliver top quality for ourselves and for our clients. This requires ambition, self belief, and occasionally a bit of stubbornness! We listen to the experts, but when we know we’re the best people for the job, we don’t like to take no for an answer. We’ve fought very hard for some of our biggest successes and proved it was the right thing to do. We will continue to advocate for Smart, even though sometimes we’ll need to run through walls to achieve success.

8

We want happy and good people in our team

Our people make Smart great. To keep us great, we need to make Smart a place where talented and ambitious people want to work. We're a fair, flexible employer and we always take suggestions for how we can improve – in return, we expect our team to work hard and deliver to a high standard and in a reasonable time frame. We expect people to treat one another with respect and dignity. We discourage political game-playing, grandstanding and petty rivalries – these are a waste of life. We don’t expect team members to sit at their desks pretending to work late if their work is done, and we are flexible – go to see the dentist during work hours if you need to! Above all, we want people to enjoy being part of Smart.

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If you're a member and would like to learn more about how coronavirus will affect your pension savings, read our latest article here.