The National Pension Service’s expert adviser system is on track to be fully operational.

South Korea’s Ministry of Health and Welfare has hired four staff members to assist a group of expert advisers belonging to the NPS’s Investment Management (NPSIM), sources said on May 25.

NPS decided to introduce the expert adviser system earlier this year to strengthen its decision-making process. In February three specialists, including National Pension Research Institute’s vice president Won Jong-hyun, were appointed as full-time expert advisers.

They are responsible for providing technical advice to the NPSIM’s Fund Management Committee chaired by the Minister of Health and Welfare. The committee consists of three sub-committees in charge of investment policy, responsible investment and governance, and risk management, performance and compensation.

Initially six staff members were to be hired to assist the expert advisers. One was hired in March and four new employees have been added through a hiring process that started in April.

These five employees are to be assigned to one of the three sub-committees. The hiring process reportedly attracted about 25 applicants including college professors and chief executives of asset management firms. Qualified applicants had to have either a doctorate degree in economics, business, finance or statistics, or a master’s degree with minimum three-year work experience in the related industry field. (Reporting by Hee-yeon Han)