We were contacted by a local company around 9 months prior to their “staging date” for Automatic Enrolment. They were very concerned about the impact of auto enrolment, in both financial and practical terms.
In the first instance, we provided a detailed overview of the practical implications of auto enrolment and how these might best be dealt with in order to comply with the rules, we also carried out an initial assessment of the workforce and explained the financial costs for the business. Our clients felt that they would not be in a position to manage and administer the staging process on their own and we agreed to assist them with this.
We established that their existing payroll programme could not produce the necessary data for them to comply with the practical requirements of auto enrolment. They consulted with their payroll provider and arranged to adopt a new system that will enable them to cope with these demands.
After considering the basis of contributions and agreeing on the level of contributions that the company was prepared to pay, the next step was to select a suitable provider for their auto enrolment pension scheme. Many of the traditional pension providers are now applying monthly administration charges for workplace pension schemes and as the company wanted to avoid additional costs, we looked at the low cost “multi-employer” schemes offered by organisations such as The People’s Pension and NEST. In this instance, The People’s Pension was felt to be the best option and having registered the company with them, we provided draft communications for them to issue to their workers.
The company has recently passed its staging date and, working with the installation team at The People’s Pension, we have ensured that all “eligible” workers have been successfully enrolled and the correct communications issued to everyone in accordance with the rules. We assisted the company with their Declaration of Compliance and will provide an annual Pension Governance Report in the future to help ensure that they continue to comply with the requirements of auto enrolment.
The key to success with auto enrolment is in starting to plan for this well in advance of your staging date and, in particular, ensuring that satisfactory payroll arrangements are in place with complete and accurate employee data.