Automatic enrolment is a system that’s great news for employees, but perhaps not such great news for employers.
Working out how you’re going to deal with every single one of your auto enrolment responsibilities may seem like a huge burden right now, but with the right mindset and the right approach, it won’t be the nightmare you might expect. One of the many things you need to think about and plan for is how you are going to deal with the additional and new administration tasks you’ll face.
The main administration tasks you should expect and plan for, as outlined by The Pensions Regulator and covered in our Survival Guide, include things like record keeping and working with advisors as well as making and maintaining contributions. We would add communication into the administrative process and explain why below.
Here’s an ‘at a glance’ summary of what The Pensions Regulator has to say about what you should expect:
Record keeping for automatic enrolment is an essential part of the auto enrolment process and involves everything from making sure that your starting records are up to date to making sure you have a system in place to ensure that ongoing data is accurate and complete.
Working with advisers
When you set up your pension scheme, you might choose an Independent Financial Advisor to help you or your accountant. Either way, whoever you appoint to this advisory role should keep on top of sending you the information you need to run a compliant scheme and deliver quality service to your employees. However, you owe it to yourself to make sure you stay close to your advisors and make sure they are providing you with everything you need in a timely manner.
Maintaining and making contributions
When you set up your pension scheme, you’ll become a trustee of that scheme and as such you’ll have a responsibility to make sure that contributions paid are accurate and on time. Again, while your trustee obligations shouldn’t be too onerous, it’s an important part of your auto enrolment administration process to make sure you stay on top of your responsibilities.
Successfully communicating with your workforce before, during and post auto enrolment launch is probably one of the most important factors that will impact on your success. It’s for this reason that making sure you have all your communication administrative obligations ready to be dealt with will always pays dividends.
When it comes to how you organise these tasks in your business, there are two basic options. First you could deal with them in-house. Second, you could do what more and more business owners are deciding to do and that’s outsource. Here’s what we believe to be the pros and cons of each:
Do your admin in-house
If you choose to deal with the auto enrolment process in-house, you’ll need to satisfy yourself that your team is both capable of dealing with the work and that the cost of taking on the additional risk of managing this task in-house makes sound business sense. It may well be that your payroll software simply needs to be upgraded to cater for the software requirements of auto enrolment, but what about opt ins and opt outs? How much time is this new requirement likely to consume in your business?
While it’s virtually impossible to predict the exact time investment requirement for auto enrolment, most employers are in agreement that the process has taken up significantly more admin time than they had anticipated. This is probably why more and more smart business owners are choosing the outsourcing option.
If you choose to outsource your auto enrolment tasks to an expert in this field, you can sit back knowing that your obligations are being looked after and your risk is minimised. Choosing the right outsourcing partner means that your HR and payroll teams can get on with doing what they do best, without having to take their eye off the ball to deal with automatic enrolment.
If you’d like to discuss your pensions auto enrolment options, why not get in touch? We have a team on hand to help you no matter what size your business and at no matter what stage on the auto enrolment journey you find yourself. There really is no need to go it alone.