According to the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA), around 80 percent of women are currently retiring with insufficient super savings to fund a comfortable lifestyle, with the average balance for women at retirement sitting at around $70,000 less than the average for men.

While the reasons behind this are largely structural, there are a number of easy steps women can take to get in control of their super and look forward.

We asked the Qantas Super team about the most important thing they have each done to take control of their super.

Nicola (Member Experience team)

I love working in super because I love helping people, especially when it comes to their financial future and working towards a better retirement.

I’ve done a few of things to take control of my super, including combined my super accounts, make additional salary sacrifice contributions, align my investment options with my personal risk profile, and annual review the amount of death, total and permanent disablement and income protection insurance I have in my super.

Diana (Advice team)

I love working in super because I believe small changes today can greatly impact our outcomes tomorrow, in anything we do. Super is a big part of our financial future and I enjoy helping people plan ahead to get ahead.

The most important thing I’ve done to take control of my super is salary sacrifice.

Emma (Operations team)

I love working in super because we help make a difference in people’s lives every day.

The most important thing I’ve done to take control of my super is annually review how much I have in super compared to my other assets and work out where best to put my savings for the coming year.

Josephine (Advice team)

I love working in super because it allows me to educate and help others by sharing my knowledge of this rapidly changing environment we call super!

The most important thing I’ve done to take control of my super is ensure I have adequate insurance cover in place to protect me financially in unforeseen medical emergencies.

Jo (Risk and Compliance team)

I love working in super because it’s a rapidly evolving industry where I can learn something new every day to help benefit our members.

Thinking about my financial wellbeing during retirement has always felt a long way off but giving my super a bit of love by regularly checking in on my balance, reviewing my investment options and topping it up where possible has given me confidence that I am on the road to achieving the retirement lifestyle I want to live.

Simone (Advice team)

I love working in super because I love talking to members about their plans and what they can do to improve.

The most important thing I’ve done to take control of my super is contribute extra to my super, and look at it regularly.

Suzette (Risk and Compliance team)

I love working in super because I get to see how it can make a huge and positive difference to our members’ financial wellbeing. While super can seem boring, complex and way off, it’s our role to help take away these stigmas and take away the complexity. It’s great to be able to engage with our members and provide the right tools and guidance to ensure they maximise their super.

The most important thing I’ve done to take control of my super is check in on my balance regularly and top it up with small amounts where I can. It’s often hard to think about the long-term future when today, tomorrow and this year may present plenty of their own challenges, but the nature of long-term savings, such as super, is that the earlier you take small steps, the easier it is down the track. This provides a longer period of time for your money to grow.

Celeste (Office of the CEO)

I love working in super because everyone at Qantas Super is so passionate about helping the members. From the Member Experience team to the Investments team to the Finance team, they all think about how to benefit the member.

The most important thing I did to take control of my super was start voluntary contributions into my super from my very first job. When I first started doing it, I didn’t think anything of it, but 25 years later it has made a pretty big difference when I compare my super to my partner’s.

Sara (Finance team)

I love working in super because, prior to working at Qantas Super, I was guilty of paying very little attention to my super account and investments. However, since joining I’ve learned a lot from my team on what resources are out there to help me better prepare for my retirement, as well as things to be more conscious of, such as the fees and premiums I’ve been paying.

The most important thing I’ve done to take control of my super is consolidate the various super accounts I’ve accumulated over the years to ensure my investments are not eaten by fees! Educating yourself on the pros and cons of different super funds and their benefits is also crucial in planning for the future.

Tracee (Operations team)

I love working in super because we can make a difference in our members’ financial futures.

The most important thing I’ve done to take control of my super is to take an interest in aligning my risk comfort level with how my funds are invested. This takes the stress out of worrying about market movements. The other important thing I’ve done is to review the type and level of insurance cover in my super to match my current needs. Now that the kids left home and the mortgage has gone down, I don’t need as much cover, which means more super for my retirement!

Bronwyn (Office of the CEO)

I love working in super because for most people, super is the largest financial asset they will hold when they retire – so it’s important to get it right for members. It might seem like a long way off, but small changes along the way can help maximise your retirement savings.

The most important thing I’ve done to take control of my super is to review the fees and performance for the three super accounts I hold and make an informed decision about whether to consolidate my super accounts or not. As part of that review, I made sure I was only paying for insurance once, and that type and amount of insurance cover matched my personal needs.

Simple steps to help you take control

  • Tidy up your super. Combining your super funds and finding lost super makes it easier to track your total balance and can mean you pay fewer fees overall.
  • Top up if you can. Even small amounts count towards making time and compound interest work for you.
  • Check your investment options are right for you. Make sure your money is invested in a way that considers your attitudes towards risk, your timeframe to invest, and your personal circumstances.
  • Make sure you’ve got the right amount of insuranceIf you’re over-insured, paying premiums for cover you don’t need can deplete your super balance. If you’re under-insured, you may not have enough to protect your family in the event of an unfortunate event.
  • Understand your potential entitlements. If you’re eligible for any government offsets and co-contributions then you should take advantage of them.

We're here to help

If you want to learn more or need help with making a decision about your super, you can get simple advice over the phone or face to face. It’s included as a part of your membership so there’s no extra cost.