Team Alan Woods

Alan Woods


Alan specialises in public policy, regulation, financial services & people development. His career spans top management roles, close working with ministers & CEOs, and shaping public policy.

His recent and current clients include the National Association of Pension Funds (chairing a cross sector group on transparency); the Work and Pensions Select Committee (acting as expert adviser); the General Medical Council and the National Employment Savings Trust (reviewing board effectiveness); personal clients (executive coaching) and the Pensions Regulator (advising on regulatory policy.)

Alan’s career began with a rapid rise through the civil service. After cutting his teeth in operations management, HR, and policy roles he became Principal Private Secretary to successive Cabinet ministers. He then led his Department’s annual spending negotiations with HM Treasury, involving sums totalling £90 billion. In 2000 Alan moved to the Association of British Insurers leading the life insurance industry’s engagement with the public policy world. He led industry-wide improvements through a new quality mark scheme; negotiated successfully with regulators; and shifted the public policy agenda to focus on the UK’s savings gap.

In 2004 Alan became Pensions Policy Director at the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). He led the biggest ever reforms of the country’s pensions system resulting in better pensions for millions and a new system of saving. As a member of the top management team at DWP he helped steer the 100,000-strong organisation through the recession. He was a non-executive director of the Pensions, Carers and Disability Service (serving 12 million customers) and chaired the cross-government committee on our ageing society.

Alan brings a breadth of experience across sectors & functions both as executive & non-executive director, and as a board effectiveness reviewer. He is a qualified business coach with clients in CEO & director roles. He is passionate about realising the benefits of diversity, and helping individuals and organisations maximise their potential while staying true to their values.