This means that if your employer provides a company pension scheme to its full-time staff, it must also offer the scheme and the same benefits to its part-timers (on a pro rata basis).
There have been some big changes in pensions provision in recent years, especially the introduction of pensions auto-enrolment. By 1 February 2018, all employers must have auto-enrolled ‘eligible job-holders’ who are not already participating in a qualifying workplace pension. Unions have broadly welcomed auto-enrolment as an important step towards securing better pensions provision. However, the scheme is far from perfect and in particular, many part-time workers (mostly women) will miss out on being automatically enrolled because their earnings are not high enough to meet the eligibility threshold (£10,000) – although they can ask to join. Earnings from more than one job, where you work part-time for more than one employer, are not added together to reach the £10,000 threshold.
Part-time workers who earn less than £10,000 a year can ask to take part in auto-enrolment if they want to and, if they earn more than £5,564, their employer may be obliged to make a contribution too.
You can get advice about your pension rights as a part-time workers, including advice as to how auto-enrolment affects you, from the website of the Pensions Advisory Service.