from Richard Smith, employment services director, Croner

Sir; Private businesses will be forced to make job cuts and lower wage settlements to foot the bill for rising payroll costs, making employees the real victims if employers’ three per cent pension contributions become compulsory under new proposals by Lord Turner.
Employers will have to make significant cuts and there is no firm evidence to say promoting contributions as a perk has any positive effect on recruitment, retention or motivation.
If the private sector retirement age is raised to 67, compared with 60 in the public sector, this is potentially damaging for SME employers, not only in terms of cost. It will also make it difficult to attract the best staff, who are likely to consider it a no-brainer that the public sector will offer a more comfortable work/life balance and greater job security.
While larger organisations with established schemes may be content with compulsion, smaller employers may have issues around time, cost and expertise. Those with one or two employees would be ill-placed to run a scheme of any sort.
The upshot is that if private sector businesses are compelled to contribute, all employers will find this money from planned payroll budgets. They will have to explore ways of improving efficiency, which could include job cuts and lower wages. This in turn disadvantages businesses by making them less attractive as employers, so it really could be a double blow.