5th November 2015
In the final instalment of this two part blog series we look at how communication and following the correct guidance can ensure that the Auto Enrolment process is smooth and efficient.
Successful AE relies on great communication. All communications with employees must be legally compliant and meet specific requirements laid out by the Pensions Regulator. All workers must be informed in writing (by traditional letter or email) about the changes and the timescales involved. The information must be specific to the individual – a company cannot send a blanket communication to all employees and while email is most cost effective, it is important to consider employees in different job roles. Do those working in the field, in retail or on the shop floor have a relevant email address?
Well thought out employee communication will help build a committed and loyal workforce. The duty is on the employer to provide the right information to the right individual, at the right time.
An outsourced approach
The great news is that a significant amount of the AE burden can be outsourced to trusted third parties. Key tasks that can be handled by a trusted payroll provider in conjunction with a financial advisor partner include:
- Initial workforce assessment – to determine who needs to be enrolled
- Verifying staging date – and creating an action plan to meet the timeline
- Choosing and applying for a qualifying pension scheme
- Ensuring payroll staff understand the new AE requirements – including worker types, pension scheme design and communication
- Enrolling staff through the payroll – including staff communication templates
- Registration with the Pension Regulator to meet the declaration of compliance process
The right help and guidance can ensure the business meets automatic key enrolment dates and avoids heavy fines.
AE demands a payroll services provider with both technical ability and in-depth understanding of pension requirements. AE may be daunting for SMEs but great preparation will ensure that enrolment goes smoothly and opt outs are minimised. The benefits of planning ahead and being prepared are clear, minimising time spent by key senior personnel that could distract from essential business development.
AE is a reality – it cannot be ignored. Companies need to get ahead of the game now.