Keeping a large fund focused on creating the best possible member outcomes is made more straightforward when that’s the sole purpose of the fund and there are no conflicts of interest within its structure or operations to distract from that aim.

Matthew Halpin, chief of member support and advice for QSuper, winner of the Fund of the Year in the large super fund category at the Conexus Financial Superannuation Awards, says there is a “very, very, very strong focus on the members”.

“There are absolutely no conflicts in our fund, so what I mean by that is we exist for one purpose, and that is to improve the retirement outcomes for our members,” he says.

“And that’s very clear throughout the organisation, because of the fact that there’s no conflicts. Everyone is aligned to the core purpose.”

Halpin says keeping the approximately 1100 QSuper staff aligned with members’ interests is built on the fund’s investment philosophy, “which is focusing on the outcomes for our members, rather than the actual short-termism of our investment returns”.

“That’s broadly our philosophy and that philosophy drives into both our product design and our advice offerings as well,” he says.

An award for achieving great member outcomes is a consequence of the philosophy, not an end in itself, Halpin says.

“I’m not sure that awards are our major motivator for why we’re here,” he says.

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“We go about our core focus and our core purpose of improving retirement outcomes for members, and if these awards come along, then so be it.”

Nevertheless, the award is an important acknowledgement for staff that the work they are doing is on the right path.

“Our staff love the fact that we win these awards,” Halpin says.

“It’s really good validation of the work that we do.”

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